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Legal eagle gives Safa the red card


The South African Football Association seemingly never-ending financial woes have seen them flagged offside once again and facing the attachment of their assets.

Safa advocate McCaps Motimele has applied for judgment in the Johannesburg High Court against the football body for its failure to pay him more than R600,000 for legal services.

Motimele filed the summons on Monday giving Safa 10 days to file notice to oppose his claim with failure to do so possibly resulting in judgment granted against them.

If the judgment is granted, Motimele may also be granted a writ of execution to attach and auction off Safa's assets to recoup his moolah.

According to court papers seen by Sunday World, Motimele said he attended various electoral-related meetings at Safa headquarters in the south of Johannesburg for R45,000 a day plus VAT between March and May 2018.

"[The] plaintiff subsequently rendered an account to the defendant in the agreed upon sum of R983,250 inclusive of VAT... It was agreed that the defendant could effect payment to the plaintiff in equal instalments payable in September, October and November 2018," reads the papers.

Motimele said Safa only paid him R300,000 on September 5, leaving an outstanding amount of R683,250.

He said he wrote a letter to Safa on March 4 demanding payment of the outstanding balance.

The veteran legal eagle said Safa admitted that they owed the balance and asked for a payment plan that would give them time to settle the amount.

Motimele said he advised Safa that he would accept payment over two months on certain terms and conditions, and "on the basis that such conditions were included in a written acknowledgement of indebtedness" that would be signed by two Safa executive members.

He added that a week later Safa accepted his proposal and "requested an opportunity to settle such indebtedness over four months and furnished the names of two executive officers".

Motimele said after promising to pay him, he received a letter from the organisation stating that the two executives, Gronie Hluyo (CFO) and Russell Paul (acting CEO), who had initially agreed to sign the agreement, had since changed their minds and refused to put pen to paper.

With Safa failing to effect payment, Motimele is pleading with the court for judgment against the soccer body for payment of R683,250, as well as interest accrued from September last year .

In two e-mails sent to Motimele's lawyer, Steve Friedland of Friedland Inc Attorneys, Hluyo stated that Safa was experiencing a cashflow problem.

"We have been experiencing some financial difficulties for some time now. Please may you give us 30 days to provide you with a payment plan. We believe that 30 days will give us the opportunity to provide you with a realistic payment plan.

"If we get some cash inflows before 30 days, we will make some interim payment," reads the e-mail.

Friedland told Sunday World that the legal match against Safa was in the pipeline because Safa has not paid his client.

"That's why we are suing them," he said.

Hluyo said they will oppose Motimele's action.

"Yes, he was not paid because he wanted the two executives, Mr Paul and I, to sign the acknowledgement of indebtedness in our individual capacities and not as Safa officials.

"We refused because he was going to come after us when Safa failed to pay him. But we will pay him once we receive funding from our funders," Hluyo said.

Safa was recently sued by SS Network for a R7.6m debt while former CEO Leslie Sedibe is also demanding R5m from them.

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