Minister to ring in changes in boxing

2011-08-13 18:41

Minister of Sports and Recreation Fikile Mbalula is ready to ring in the changes when the term of the current Boxing South Africa (BSA) board expires at the end of the month.

The minister told City Press in a telephone interview from Burundi on Friday that: “We are definitely going to have a new board. We advertised the posts, received applications and are going to announce a new board as soon as the current term expires.”

The board chaired by Dr Peter Ngatane has recently been severely attacked over their handling of certain matters.

Other board members are Solly Selebi, Archie Jonas, Mike Sodo and Andile Sidinile. Ngatane was appointed chairperson for the term that started in 2008, succeeding Dali Mpofu (2005 – 2008) and Mthobi Tyamzashe (2002 – 2005).

Some of the most pressing issues that the board would have to resolve before departing included promoter Mzi Mnguni’s misbehaviour, three-time world champion Dingaan Thobela’s licensing saga and the tax problems faced by a few boxers.

Mnguni stormed into the ring at East London’s Orient Theatre two weeks ago and pushed referee Alan Matakane who stopped the bout between Ayanda Yaphi and Godfrey Nzimande, declaring the latter the winner.

The promoter’s action led to a riot by fans and the referee had to be escorted out of the venue by police, while a few officials, including BSA’s Loyiso Mtya, were hit by flying objects during the ensuing chaos. Mnguni later apologised publicly but new BSA chief executive Moffat Qithi said he would urge the board to discipline Mnguni before bowing out.

Thobela’s licence was revoked by BSA, which cited his age, after initially giving him the green light. He was challenging BSA’s “unfair decision.”

Ngatane said: “Some of these matters are operational and must be dealt with by the office. The board deals with policy issues and some of these only come to us after being referred by the chief executive or unhappy licensees.”

Former BSA acting chief executive Krish Naidoo said the board members should get their house in order or risk being forgotten.

“The members got themselves mixed up in issues that were not their business, and it is now difficult to disentangle themselves before leaving,” said Naidoo.

“BSA seemingly lacked a legal mind and business acumen, consequently finding themselves in difficulties.
Thobela said: “It’s time the board members depart and it’s actually good riddance. They have done a lot of damage to boxing.”
Boxing manager Mava Malla said BSA was “desperate for a man of the ilk of Stan Christodoulou.’’

Christodoulou, though ­­iron-fisted and enemy to many, was regarded as a painstaking executor of his job while an executive director of the national organisation.

Ngatane added: “People are entitled to their opinions.” 

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