19 August 2017 – Minister of Sports and Recreation SA, Hon Thulas Nxesi on Saturday, 19 August 2017 addressed the SAFA NEC in which he asked among other things that the Premier Soccer League (PSL) and the Association must cooperate to make sure national teams are represented by the best players possible.

Speaking on the backdrop of U20 and Bafana Bafana CHAN squads suffering from a spate of withdrawals, Minister Nxesi said he wanted to see SAFA and PSL work together to find common working ground.

“Because of these untimely withdrawals, teams end up not being a true reflection of the coaches’ will and that must not be allowed. We want our country to be represented by the best players,” said Minister Nxesi.

The Minister reaffirmed that his ministry would do what it can do to make sure that representing one’s country comes ahead of anything else but added SAFA and PSL should find common ground by opening communication channels.

“There should be a MOU between the two because even if I am to legislate, I don’t want to see a law that will be received with resistance from other quarters. Nothing beats cordial interface to solve issues.”

The Minster said SAFA was the most compliant of all associations when it comes to integration but said the Association needed to do more with regards to schools penetration. He requested that SAFA and SASFA must resolve their outstanding impasse because schools were critical in the growth of football in the country.

Minister Nxesi said his ministry would support SAFA if it needed to host the upcoming CAF Women Symposium that is pencilled for next year. He also requested SAFA to draw up a solid and compelling bid in order to host the u23 CAF Africa Cup of Nations tournament. Minister Nxesi said because of the tough economic times, the government was scaling down on its spending and would only support good bids. SAFA needed to package its bid well, he said.

The Minister also told the SAFA NEC meeting and attending media that his ministry would announce the terms of reference of the commission of enquiry into the FNB Stadium stampede that killed two fans three weeks ago.

He said while the PSL had commenced its own investigation, the government would institute its own because fans’ security was a huge priority.

Meanwhile, the SAFA NEC meeting resolved that the SAFA Development Agency must close down and that all of its functions be integrated into the SAFA framework.

A new Trust for the delivery of Infrastructure is to be established consisting of Lucas Radebe, Gay Mokoena and Mzimkhulu Fina.

The NEC also agreed that a Woman’s National League must be established in 2019 and such league shall include 9 Provincial winners as well as Bloemfontein Celtics, Mamelodi Sundowns and winner of Universities Women Football.

Mr Xolile Nkompela was nominated and appointed new SAFA vice president to take over the position left vacant by Chief Mwelo Nonkonyana who was fired for misdemeanour in 2013. Mr Mxolisi Sibam was co-opted as the new NEC member to take position left by the elevation of Mr Nkompela.

It was also resolved that Provincial Academies be established in all Provinces excluding KZN which already had a full-fledged academy.

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