Safa faced by regional revolt

MIDFIELD BATTLE: Safa regions' task team Sam Msimango, Albert Mokoena, Nakedi Lekota, Thami Khuzwayo and Kgama Shai hold a press conference yesterday to announce that they do not recognise the new Safa leadership. Pic: BAFANA MAHLANGU. 18/10/2009
MIDFIELD BATTLE: Safa regions' task team Sam Msimango, Albert Mokoena, Nakedi Lekota, Thami Khuzwayo and Kgama Shai hold a press conference yesterday to announce that they do not recognise the new Safa leadership. Pic: BAFANA MAHLANGU. 18/10/2009

THE dispute surrounding the recent Safa elections took a dramatic turn yesterday when 20 of its 52 regional structures announced they wouldn't recognise the new leadership.

THE dispute surrounding the recent Safa elections took a dramatic turn yesterday when 20 of its 52 regional structures announced they wouldn't recognise the new leadership.

Addressing journalists yesterday, Ali Mokoena, regional executive member of Safa Johannesburg, said the leadership was elected unconstitutionally.

"We met as the 30 regions of Safa and resolved that the process of electing the current leadership was flawed, we do not recognised the current leadership."

Mokoena is a member of the task team elected by the regions present to speak to Safa on this much publicised dispute, which they want to be referred for arbitration.

Other members of the task team are former Bafana Bafana head of delegation Nakedi Lekota, Sam Msimango, Thami Khuzwayo and Kgama Shai.

Msimango and Shai, both attorneys, are also doubling up as legal advisors of the regions, who supported Irvin Khoza's campaign to be elected Safa president prior to the drama-riddled elections.

Lekota said they would write a letter to Safa today to seek an urgent meeting to discuss the elections.

"The issue regarding the unconstitutional process of the elections is a domestic one," said Shai, referring to the endorsement of Kirsten Nemantandani as Safa president by Fifa.

Msimango added: "We respect Fifa, but that was done (endorsing the new Safa leadership) because of the information given to them.

"Fifa did not hear us.

"We are going for arbitration and not to court. Let the arbitrator decide on the matter, we will gladly accept the ruling.

"We need fresh elections if the ruling is in our favour."

The regions argue that Safa erred by going ahead with the elections - despite it being advised by Judge Ralph Zulman to refer the issue of eligibility of presidential candidates for arbitration.

Nematandani was elected unopposed as the new president after the withdrawal of Khoza and Danny Jordaan - after objections were raised by some regions in the football organisation.

The PSL, a special member of Safa, has also described the new Safa leadership as being unconstitutional, arguing that the process was flawed.

X