21 June 2020 – The South African Football Association (SAFA) National Executive Committee (NEC) held an Extraordinary Meeting at SAFA House on Saturday, 20 June 2020 where it made a number of key resolutions.
Among the key decisions were pronouncements on the SAFA National Women’s League, protocols on resumption of football as prescribed by the Minister of Sports, appointment of SAFA CEO and exploiting areas of cooperation agreements with various Member Associations. The NEC also interrogated the Mokoena Report and unanimously rejected it on the basis that it contained many claims that could not be substantiated.
SAFA Medical Officer, Dr Thulani Ngwenya gave a full briefing on the impact of Covid-19 on the restart of play, both for professional and amateur football. It is in this context that the NEC decided that the SNWL be declared concluded and that the current league log standing, with a handful of matches to be played, 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 SAFA NEC further confirmed that JVW and MaIndies are both promoted to the SNWL for next season.
Dr Ngwenya recommended that all other amateur leagues must remain suspended until the end of the lockdown or when the general environment is conducive to do so. This matter will be further revisited and discussed at a later stage.
It was also reported that in the absence of official competitions in the Regions and LFAs which are similarly suspended, the phenomenon of social games has emerged in some parts of the country and it was emphasised that this is in violation of lockdown regulations and the authorities must act to avoid a spike in Covid-19 infections.
On the National Soccer League (NSL), SAFA will continue to work with the NSL to develop further proposals for submission to the government on the way forward.
The NEC also confirmed the appointment of Advocate Tebogo Motlanthe as SAFA CEO until December.
SAFA’s highest decision-making body decided that a Special Committee should be formed to engage the FAs of Russia, Qatar, Spain and England on a number of cooperation engagements. These include youth development, competitions, women football, schools football, referees, coaching and medical matters.
SAFA has also been approached by various top FAs around the world for similar cooperation agreements.
The SAFA Constitution provides the NEC to appoint the vice-presidents as they are no longer elected at the National Congress. In Saturday’s NEC meeting, the overwhelming majority of the NEC members expressed their disappointment in both vice-presidents Ria Ledwaba and Gay Mokoena in their handling of SAFA matters in the public domain and their engagement with third parties.
The NEC expressed their displeasure at the two’s violation of the SAFA’s laid down internal processes and understood this as lack of confidence in the Association’s Constitutional and governance structures. It is on this basis that the NEC decided that the two vice-presidents should be removed and replaced.
The SAFA Constitution guarantees that one woman, at the minimum, must be appointed as one of the vice-presidents and the Association remains committed to promoting women in the decision-making structures. SAFA’s promotion of women in governance structures of football is clearly demonstrated by ensuring, in all structures from LFAs to Regional structures, that there is a high number of women representation.
All of SAFA’s national women teams have women coaches, SAFA has established the first national women’s soccer league on the continent and many other lower leagues for women; something which is unprecedented in the history of South African football. SAFA will continue to strengthen women’s football both in the field and governance structures.
In the meantime, both Ms Ledwaba and Mr Mokoena will continue to serve as members of the SAFA NEC.
The NEC noted that significant progress has been made in paying long outstanding debts to various football constituencies that include the ABC Motsepe league, the Sasol league, SAB and Regional grants. This process is continuing and the NEC expressed the appreciation in the new administration and direction it has taken in dealing with SAFA’s finances.
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