10 June 2023 – The South African Football Association (SAFA) has noted defamatory statements circulated by an individual who claims he is a forensic investigator, and has recently been employed by a former Trustee of the now dissolved 2010 FIFA World Cup Legacy Trust .
This individual claims he was asked by the said former Trustee to investigate SAFA and the Trust, for supposed fraud and corruption. This individual has gone as far as starting a petition against SAFA, the President Dr Danny Jordaan and CFO Gronie Hluyo. This is a clear attempt to remove democratically elected leadership through undemocratic means.
These claims are utter rubbish and have no basis, but they are intended to derail the bidding process for the 2027 FIFA Women’s World Cup Bid. We are not surprised that this is being engineered by former disgruntled officials of SAFA and this is their latest attempt to derail South Africa’s Bid to host the FIFA Women’s World Cup in 2027.
The 2010 FIFA World Cup Legacy Trust is not a SAFA Trust. This is why it’s called the FIFA Legacy Trust. It is a Trust that was established jointly by FIFA and SAFA. The Chief Finance Officer of FIFA attended all Legacy Trust meetings. Ernst & Young submitted unqualified audited financial statements for every year of operation of the Trust, and they were approved by all trustees without exception up until the final financial statement. The final closing report of the Trust has been submitted to all SAFA members and to FIFA. Everyone agreed that the Trust had made a major contribution to South African football, including the purchase of the National Technical Center in the south of Johannesburg.
In the final closing report of the Trust on 2 October 2021 submitted to all SAFA members and to FIFA, the decisions to wind down the Trust were adopted unanimously by the SAFA NEC where Danny Jordaan, Ria Ledwaba and Obakeng Molatedi were present and approved the decisions. It is for this reason that we have no option, after this continuous and vicious attack on the integrity of SAFA and individuals at SAFA, to embark on a legal process to protect the name and reputation of SAFA.
As far as SAFA is concerned, we have submitted an unqualified audited financial statement for every year of operation, including, the recent AGM where the audited financial statement was approved. We have never heard of this supposed forensic investigator, and apparently he is a government official in the City of Johannesburg where he is an advisor. Johannesburg is one of the bidding cities for the FIFA Women’s World Cup in 2027. So we find it strange that only on Thursday (8 June 2023) the MECs and Minister of Sports, Arts and Culture Zizi Kodwa endorsed the Bid, including Johannesburg and Gauteng. On Friday (9 June 2023) this man is coming from nowhere, with no proof, making serious allegations. It is on this basis that we have no choice but to embark on a legal process to protect the name of SAFA, the Legacy Trust, FIFA and individuals in SAFA.
We are determined that this matter must be ventilated in a court of law. We have also already instituted an action in the Johannesburg High Court against one of the disgruntled former officials of SAFA.