Safa ousts Chief

2014-10-12 15:00

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Questions remain in the wake of Nonkonyana’s expulsion as governing body is praised for successful congress

The expulsion of Chief Mwelo Nonkonyana as SA Football Association (Safa) vice-president yesterday has left more questions than answers.

The decision to fire the vocal Nonkonyana was endorsed at Safa’s 24th annual congress at the Sandton Convention Centre in northern Joburg.

The two immediate questions are: Will Nonkonyana take his expulsion lying down and who will replace him as one of the four vice-presidents to Danny Jordaan?

Nonkonyana has been on suspension since last October and it would seem his penchant for taking his organisation to court was his final undoing.

It emerged at the congress that Safa was prepared to grant Nonkonyana the opportunity to address the delegates and plead his case but that right was withdrawn after he took the organisation to court twice this week.

Both his applications were turned down by the South Gauteng High Court.

“We gave him a letter this morning informing him that his right to address the congress had been withdrawn,” Safa CEO Dennis Mumble announced.

Nonkonyana did not attend the congress.

The motion to adopt the national executive committee’s recommendation to expel Nonkonyana was made by Safa’s Pixley ka Seme region, seconded by the eKangala region and adopted by a show of hands by almost all the delegates.

Attempts to get comment from Nonkonyana drew a blank as we were greeted by his voicemail.

He had not responded to our voicemail messages and SMSes by the time of going to press.

Besides the Nonkonyana issue, Safa was hailed all round for a successful annual general meeting.

It was quite an innovative gathering where a number of awards were dished out to several deserving individuals.

Safa also became the first South African sports federation to allow members of the media to sit in throughout their congress.

Unlike in previous years, the organisation made a number of positive pronouncements, including a R10?million surplus in their financial report. This was contrary to losses of R56?million and R46?million in 2012 and last year, respectively.

Jordaan said Safa’s Vision 2022 was on course and proof of this lay in several national teams – such as Banyana Banyana, and the men’s Under-20 and Under-17 teams – having qualified for their respective African championships.

“However, this comes with huge challenges,” he pointed out. “The more matches our national teams qualify for, the more money is needed. This means we need to increase our revenue streams.”

Jordaan said they hoped to achieve this through drawing in more sponsorship to build up on the R1?billion broadcast deal they signed with Siyaya?TV.

“Our main challenges now after turning our finances around are to increase revenue streams as well as to build more Safa assets,” he said.

He also said among his organisation’s five pillars of Vision 2022 was the task to produce at least 10?000 coaches per year.

SA Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee president Gideon Sam commended Safa on a “very successful congress”.

“I was impressed with the decisive way the congress dealt with the vice-president issue. I hate sitting at a congress that goes around in circles. We have always told the sports movement that big federations like Safa must lead the way and today I am really impressed,” he said.

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