18 June 2022 – Several women leaders within the South African Football Association (SAFA) have come out in strong support of Dr Danny Jordaan continuing as president after the Elective Congress on June 25.
Speaking after the Extraordinary Congress held at the Sandton Convention Centre on Saturday, the group of leaders, led by chairperson of the SAFA Referee’s Committee Anastasia Tsichlas, president of Thabo Mofutsanyana Region Elizabeth de Koker, vice chairperson of SAFA KwaZulu-Natal province Thabile Msomi and chairperson of the Women’s Football Committee Emma Hendricks, said they were perturbed by presidential candidate Ria Ledwaba’s attempts to stop the Elective Congress through the courts. They said they were also troubled by some of the utterances attributed to Ledwaba in the last few weeks and the presidential race continues to heat up.
Judge Brenda Neukircher struck Ledwaba’s interdict off the roll with punitive costs on Wednesday and the Elective Congress will go ahead as planned on June 25.
“I think for us it is very hard to support someone who is breaking up our organisation,” Hendricks said.
“We need and plead with the corporate world in these next four years to support us as women so that we can equip ourselves, get ourselves ready for the next election.”
Tsichlas said they backed Jordaan in the presidential race and are behind his re-election so that the work and the programmes that have already been started can continue. She said according to FIFA, SAFA are one of the two fastest growing countries in women’s football in the world. The other is Chile.
“This is a big achievement, so we are happy to continue because of this [and many other reasons],” Tsichlas said.
“We are not here to blame anybody for anything because each person has got their own personality. You know, when you go out and rubbish people, you are actually rubbishing yourself. You do not do that.
“If you have something to say, you come and [talk] to the people you are involved with or [explain] the involvement of their names. So therefore, we are here to talk about how we are going to progress. We want to progress, we do not want to be left behind and we are doing this, and we are very happy about it.”
Hendricks said they would not support Ledwaba just because she is a woman.
“But it is hard for us to support someone just because she is a women, and then she goes out and talks negative about something we want to grow, something we are building together,” she continued. “We do not want such. We want someone who has football at heart. I understand, if you are having SAFA at heart, why are you breaking SAFA?”
On Friday SAFA won another legal battle and stopped an attempt to prevent the Elective Congress from going ahead as planned on Saturday June 25. The Western Cape High Court dismissed the Kannaland Local Football Association’s interdict to stop the Elective Congress with costs on Friday.