New twist in SA soccer turmoil

Danny Jordaan (Gallo Images)
Danny Jordaan (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - As if the administration of South African soccer was not already in turmoil, Fli-Afrika managing-director, Nazeer Camaroodeen, on Sunday declared he was ready to sue Danny Jordaan "big time" if the SAFA president had, in fact, made the allegations against his company that appeared recently in a Sunday newspaper report.

Camaroodeen has just returned from Russia where he was finalising arrangements for his travel agency to take a group of South Africans to next month's FIFA World Cup.

"I was shocked on returning to South Africa," said Camaroodeen, "to discover that a major controversy had erupted over the reported allegation that Jordaan had lodged a charge of criminality and defamation against Irvin Khoza on the basis that the PSL chairman was deeply involved in furthering the charge of rape made against him by former ANC MP, Jennifer Ferguson, - and that Fli-Afrika had arranged for the return of Ferguson to South Africa on behalf of the PSL chairman.

"There is no truth to this matter insofar as Fli-Afrika is concerned," added the company's managing-director. "I personally have never met the lady and we have never done business on her behalf.

"Documents floating around to the contrary are forgeries - and I can only hope the SAFA president is not involved in their existence. Otherwise we know what to do."

A thorough and comprehensive News24 investigative team has seen the inflammatory documents accusing Khoza and found they contain a number of discrepancies.

At the same time, Khoza - who is also a vice-president of SAFA by virtue of his role as the head of the PSL - while also effectively the boss of Orlando Pirates, refuted at a specially called media conference that he was involved in any way in the rape charge against Jordaan.

"I have never met Jennifer Ferguson," said Khoza, "and would not know her if I saw her."

But when asked whether he felt the SAFA president should step down for the good of South African soccer until his personal issues were put to rest, Khoza said he was not familiar with "all the facts involved" - and was therefore not prepared to comment on the matter at this time.

What is more certain is that while they have in the last few years worked together in apparent harmony, Jordaan and Khoza, regarded as the two most powerful administrators in South African soccer, have crossed swords on numerous occasions in the past and have been described as remaining under the surface as "the best of enemies."

And, while expediency has almost become a password of South African soccer in the past while burying under the carpet inflammatory and provocative matters, the latest tiff between Khoza and Jordaan seems to have gone too far to cynically let "bygone be bygones" and behave as though allegations have not been made, left, right and centre.

As for Ferguson, she has reiterated she has never met Khoza and the dilemma her charge against Jordaan has affected South African soccer is not her " business" - and was not made with any ulterior motives.

"My only concern is for justice to be done," she added, "and I intend to do everything within my power to see this takes place."

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