Bitter Pitso Mosimane fights back

By Drum Digital
06 June 2012

Former Bafana Bafana coach Pitso Mosimane is threatening a lawsuit against the SA Football Association (Safa) for unfair and unlawful dismissal, according ot his lawyers.

In a letter addressed to Safa chief executive Robin Petersen from Mosimane's new lawyers (his first withdrew earlier in the week due to "conflict of interest") his legal team requested a meeting with the association to finalise compensation within 30 days.

"We advise that we act for Mr Pitso Mosimane, the former coach of the national soccer team of South Africa," his lawyers, Cowan-Harper Attorneys, said in the letter.

"On the instruction of our client we have attempted to contact you during the morning of Wednesday, 6 June 2012.

"The employment of our client has been unfairly and unlawfully terminated by Safa and accordingly our client is entitled to refer a dispute to the CCMA.

"It may however be possible for the parties to resolve their differences and accordingly we wish to arrange a meeting in order to discuss the matter."

Mosimane was fired on Monday night, two years into a four-year contract, following a disappointing 1-1 draw against Ethiopia in Rustenburg in their opening 2014 Fifa World Cup qualifying match.

It was the national team's seventh consecutive game without a win.

During his two years in charge, Bafana also failed to qualify for the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations after team management, led by Mosimane, bungled the rules.

Interim coach Steve Komphela took over on Tuesday ahead of their second World Cup qualifier against Botswana in Gaborone on Saturday and a friendly international against Gabon next week.

"As the 30-day period in terms of the Labour Relations Act which applies for the referring of the dispute is now running, it will be necessary for the meeting to be arranged as soon as possible," Mosimane's lawyers said in the letter to Petersen.

If they did not hear from Petersen, they said Mosimane would refer the dispute to the CCMA.

"We trust that the matter can be resolved on an amicable basis," the letter read.

Petersen, however, poured cold water on the threat made by Mosimane and his attorneys.

"I don't think it will get that far, but if that is the road they want to take, then it's fine," Petersen said.

"As the [press] release [on Tuesday] said, we agreed amicably on the coach leaving and had telephonic conversations with different lawyers.

"The amounts of the agreement were discussed, but not resolved.

"It is part of life and the labour laws we live in, and unfortunate that we'll have to argue in public about it."

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