Seema admits Covid-19 woes cut deep

Celtic coach Lehlohonolo Seema says he and other workers received pay cuts due to Covid-19 pandemic.
Celtic coach Lehlohonolo Seema says he and other workers received pay cuts due to Covid-19 pandemic.
Image: Veli Nhlapo

The inevitable has happened at Bloemfontein Celtic.

Siwelele coach Lehlohonolo Seema was at a loss for words when he confirmed he received far less than his usual salary last month.

While he didn't confirm the amount, it is believed that Seema and his fellow technical team received a meagre R1,000 as a stipend for April.

Seema said this has had a huge impact on his life as he battles to adjust.

"We've got kids that are still young... that are going to school and we have to pay school fees," an emotional the Celtic co-coach said.

"There are other bills that we pay. We know as black people we have extended families. A lot of people are dependent on family members that are working."

Since the Covid-19 pandemic started, Celtic have struggled to pay full salaries to the players and their technical team, with chairman Max Tshabalala confirming previously that their financial woes have worsened.

Seema, however, remains positive that things will get back to normal soon.

"Yeah, of course, it did affect me," Seema continued.

"It is a very unfortunate thing because it is a global thing, so we have to take it on the chin move on and hope that this will come to an end so that the economy can start running again. People can start earning their salaries again.

"It is affecting everyone, so it's one of those pandemics that came, unfortunately, there is nothing we can do."

With Celtic ninth on the Absa Premiership table and his side in the Nedbank Cup semi-finals, and despite not receiving his full salary, the 39-year-old coach can't wait for the return of football.

"Everybody got his own opinions obviously, safety comes first for the players and us as well as the supporters. Teams who are fighting relegation will want to stop, a team that is on top of the table will want to stop so they can win the league.

"Teams that are challenging for the league will want to play until the finish. We are in the Nedbank semi-finals, so it will be different opinions, but for me, as Lehlohonolo, we rather resume when it is safe to do so."

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