Since Safa has taken a stance not to respond to my previous enquiries, I’ve decided to address my questions through this platform.
The last time they responded to my questions was through a press release and I implore them to do so again so that the public can be informed.
I’ve sent media enquiries to the association on several occasions, but – sadly – it’s never even acknowledged receipt of them.
To me, this is a clear indication that it considers me persona non grata. However, that won’t deter me and I’ll continue holding Safa accountable for its actions.
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There are many questions I’d like to pose to the association, but I’ll limit them to just a few in this issue:
- The last time anything was said about the resumption of amateur football in this country was in a statement that it would happen under level 1 of the lockdown regulations. When exactly will that be?
At Safa’s last national executive committee meeting, it was reported that it had decided that the “National Women’s League [NWL] will be declared concluded and that the current log standings, with a handful of matches to be played, will be declared final. It is on this basis that Mamelodi Sundowns’ women’s team is declared the league champions for the inaugural 2019/20 season.”
The committee further confirmed that “the Janine van Wyk women’s team (JVW FC) and MaIndies are both promoted to the NWL for next season”.
- What, then, will happen to the ABC Motsepe League play-offs? Is there going to be promotion and relegation in this division? Remember, two teams from the second division must be promoted to the GladAfrica Championship.
- Without play-offs, what will happen?
Also, the second division teams have yet to complete their outstanding matches to determine the nine provincial winners who’ll contest the play-offs.
At the rate things are going, it’s most likely that the country will only go to lockdown level 1 after October.
- If this is the case, what will happen to the national first division teams? Will there be clubs relegated to the ABC Motsepe League? If not, how many teams will form the GladAfrica Championship next season?
The sooner people know, the better, as they’ve been asking some of us for information we can’t give them. We therefore refer them to Safa for clarification.
- Another question is about the rules – will Safa take the PSL to task for writing directly to Sports, Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa? A precedent was set when the association suspended vice-president Ria Ledwaba for writing directly to the same minister in May.
Ledwaba was accused of disregarding football protocols and stepping outside the sport’s strict internal procedures after she wrote a letter to Mthethwa seeking intervention in the way certain controversial affairs had been handled by the Safa leadership.
These included the so-called Gay Mokoena Report. Ledwaba and Mokoena, who was also a vice-president, were recalled from their positions.
Mokoena was accused of leaking his letter to the media.
- Now that the league has been dealing directly with the department of sport on the issues of health and safety protocols regarding the resumption of professional football in the country, will there be consequences for their actions?
What’s good for the goose is good for the gander.
Then there is the issue of when match officials will be ready to officiate. There have been conflicting reports about this.
In a statement on Tuesday, Safa said it would be impossible for the PSL to resume matches this weekend as 110 match officials still needed to undergo medical and mandatory fitness tests.
- With about 70% of match officials unemployed, how has Safa helped them during this Covid-19 lockdown period?
We know most of them last received a salary at the end of March. Since then, it’s been a case of “no games, no pay”, other than the monthly stipend they get from the PSL.
- Will all the match officials be accommodated in the proposed biologically safe environment – like all the PSL’s 32 member clubs – for the duration of the games? If so, what will happen to those who are teachers and police officers? Will they be included in this safety measure?
- Lastly, will they be given a second kit to change into at half-time, which is mandatory?
Safa, please respond to these questions as soon as you can, because my deadline is on Tuesday.
Follow me on Twitter @TimspiritMolobi