Boxing SA finance books in shambles

MPs could not get satisfactory answers

20 November 2023 - 08:49
By Bongani Magasela
BSA acting CEO Nsikayezwe Sithole
Image: Veli Nhlapo BSA acting CEO Nsikayezwe Sithole

The board of Boxing SA (BSA) failed to respond to a direct question concerning revenue collection and that is problematic because the regulator has a huge historic debt from promoters owing BSA money.

Revenue is money owed to BSA by promoters when they stage tournaments.

That question was posed by the sports portfolio committee during an oversight virtual meeting last weekend.

Tsepo Mhlongo asked BSA to mention three top promoters who owe sanctioning. Board member and acting CEO Nsikayezwe Sithole failed to answer the question .

Instead he spoke about a sanctioning model, which he said was still on the cards. 

“We have a huge debt and it is a historical debt from promoters owing and that can be attributed to the regulations that we have on how to collect debt,” Sithole said.

“For instance, after a tournament the promoter has to submit an affidavit and BSA must count how much you made and how much must be paid to BSA.

“For us not to have this debt, because we don’t even have the mechanism to go and verify if that affidavit is accurate, we developed a new sanctioning model where a promoter pays a certain fee upfront and stage the tournament – that way they no longer owe BSA.”

The regulations say 10% from the  broadcaster goes to BSA and the 5% from other sponsors also goes to the regulator. 

Asked how much they had paid to unfairly-dismissed CEO Moffat Qithi, figures were not divulged.

Qithi earned R120,000 per month and was owed almost R15-million, which was salaries dating back from 2015 when he was unfairly dismissed by BSA board.

BSA announced recently that the matter had been resolved and they were now ready to advertise that post, which should be filled even before Sports Minister Zizi Kodwa announces a new seven-member board in December.

Sithole has been acting since 2021 when Cindy Nkomo resigned. It is understood that Sithole’s term ended on Saturday and BSA has not announced the extension of Sithole.

As a result, BSA officially does not have a CEO. At the same time, BSA has not had a director of operations since August when BSA board suspended Mandla Ntlanganiso with pay. He is yet to be charged.

That matter was also discussed in the meeting. A member of the committee quoted the Labour Relations Act, which says a person must be charged within 90 days, and Sithole said they were still investigating.

The issue around the continuous employment of a legal team which often loses cases was also brought up. BSA is understood to have spent R5-million on court cases and BSA did not come clean

It was also mentioned that BSA's travelling costs had ballooned from R1-million to R5,5-million in one financial year.

Sithole mentioned transport, accommodation of about 100 promoters who attended the two-day elective conference in Durban, where the executive of the National Professional Boxing Promoters Association was elected last year.

He said they also had to do consultations with different stakeholders every month from May last year to finalise the project of amending regulations, before blaming the media for “distorting information without putting context to what the project cost”.

BSA, as the government entity,  is allocated R19-million per annum by the National Department of Sports, Arts and Culture. They want that to be increased to R40-million.

Deputy director-general in the department of Sports, Mandisa Tshikwatamba, said a gender balance was needed, both on the board and executive and she said they wanted 50-50 representation.

Zandi Kabini was part of the board that was appointed in 2020 but she resigned in a huff in August last year. The BSA board then brought back Khulile Radu, who had been in the previous board.

BSA came on the spotlight for its compulsory training and assessment of prospective licensees. That two-day course is conducted by Radu, who does not have qualifications to facilitate training.

In his closing remarks, BSA chairman Luthando Jack requested for continuity, which suggests that Kodwa must bring them back in December after they had failed to deliver the mandate to serve boxing with dignity and pride.