SA football Association (Safa) national executive member Xolile Nkompela said the national body will not be bullied by a regional structure in any way.
This after it emerged that the Safa-Buffalo City failed to reinstate the EL Central Local Football Association (ECLFA) after its controversial dissolution and its ultimate amalgamation with the Bunkers West LFA.
The three entities, Safa national, Safa-BC and EL Central LFA, met in March to discuss the issues on EL Central LFA’s dissolution with the conclusion being that Safa-BCM had no legal grounds to stand on with regards to the matter at hand.
Nkompela said they met with EL Central and Safa-Buffalo City to discuss the matter and reached a conclusion to reverse dissolution.
“EL Central LFA matter was sorted out with the parties involved, [Safa-BCM and EL Central LFA], when we took a decision to say they should be reinstated by Safa-BCM. After we got to the crux of the matter, we noticed that there were no proper channels followed in the process of dissolving that LFA.”
Continued Nkompela: “We won’t allow anyone to do as they please to clubs or players just because they have issues with them.”
While refuting to officially dispute Nkompela’s statement, Safa-BCM president Prince Sibam said they don’t “have an EL Central LFA” and he would not comment.
“We only have six members under us, we had a congress and we reduced the number of our members from eight to six.
“That was a collective decision by congress, we just combined them with Bunkers West LFA.
“The clubs under them were supposed to go under Bunkers West and they are not the only ones that were affected by this,” said Sibam.
He said if EL Central LFA don’t want to accept that, there was nothing he can do about it – adding they can “go wherever they want to go because they have a right to do so”.
“I don’t have a right to expel anyone on my own. It was a decision taken by congress.
“Members voted anonymously to reduce our LFA’s and even King William’s Town’s LFA’s were reduced from three to two.”
EL Central LFA chairman Gavin van Rooyen said the dispute between them and Safa-BCM has been ongoing since 2013.
He said their clubs and individual members have been “suspended, expelled or dissolved for challenging the state and manner in which football is being governed”.
“We received correspondence from Safa-BCM informing us that we have been absorbed into Bunkers West and that we no longer exist.’’
He said this came as a shock to them as they were never consulted or asked to participate in any meetings where this matter was discussed.
“Since 2014 we have been isolated and marginalised from all regional football activities.’’
Continued Van Rooyen: “What baffles us is how can such an unconstitutional act be taken against a football structure that is 102 years old, fully functional with 106 teams, have 3 500 paidup players and officials, youth structures in all age level and also constitutes seniors, masters and industrial leagues.
“It is arguably one of the most productive local football association structures nationally.’’
Van Rooyen confirmed the March 27 meeting at the Garden Court Holiday Inn.
“Safa ruled that all suspensions and dissolution against us were unconstitutional and must be lifted with immediate effect and we should be reinstated on condition that we pay our affiliation fees to Safa-BCM. We adhered to all statute processes required from us by June 2017.
“After having paid our affiliation we were surprised to have it paid back to us by Safa-BCM and until now we are still isolated and marginalised.”
Van Rooyen said the youth have been denied the opportunity to participate in the Transnet-Football School of Excellence and SAB League playoffs despite submitting all required documentation to the Safa-BCM. “Safa-BCM has until now defied the Safa’s directive. We have now escalated this matter to Safa CEO Dennis Mumble.”