Friday, December 4, 2020

Chiefs fate lies with supporters as FIFA sanctions beckon

In a time of budget cuts and football layoffs in Botswana, Kgatleng giants Mochudi Centre Chiefs are racing against time to solicit funds to repay an outstanding debt.

The Kgatleng outfit has been given 30 days by the FIFA players’ status committee to pay former gaffer Philani Mabhena his outstanding balances.

“Magosi” as Chiefs are affectionately known, reportedly owe Mabhena P111, 100. 00 with the amount accumulating 5% interest per annum since the FIFA decision in 2019.

Cash strapped, under pressure and running out of time, the club is now set to turn to its loyal supporters for financial assistance.

The club is said to be ready to open a bank account solely to collect monies towards Mabhena’s debt payment before FIFA Disciplinary Committee can act against it.

It is said supporters are expected to contribute towards the account to pay the outstanding balance for the sake of the club survival in the local football arena.

Initially, Chiefs had been ordered to pay the former gaffer before the 5th August earlier this year (2020).

The deadline was however delayed following Chiefs request for time to deliberate on the matter.

Now as the players status committee has ruled again and a new deadline set, Magosi has been warned to pay within the stipulated time or be dragged before the FIFA Disciplinary Committee (DC).

“In the event that the amount due to the claimant in accordance is not paid by the respondent within the stated time limit the present matter shall be submitted, upon request, to the FIFA disciplinary committee for consideration and a formal decision,” reads a letter dated 10th November 2020 and signed by FIFA Head of players status committee Erika Montemor Ferreira.

Meanwhile, it is said that in accordance with article 15 and 18 of the procedural rules, the correspondence only communicates findings of the decision without grounds.

It is stated that should any of the parties wish to receive the grounds of the decision, a written request must be received by FIFA within 10 days of receipt of notification of the findings of the decision.

“Failure to do so within the stated deadline will result in the decision becoming final and binding and the parties being deemed to have waived their rights to file an appeal,” the letter reads.

Reached for comment, Chiefs spokesperson Pollen Mokgane acknowledged the club has received the letter and has to pay to avoid sanctions.

“It is true we had a case to answer against our former coach but the only way forward is for us to pay before sanctions,” the Chiefs spokesperson admitted.

He then went on to appeal to supporters to contribute towards payment of the outstanding debt, saying an account will be opened soon for such.

“This is the time for Chiefs family to show loyalty as we are working on building a team that will be a force to reckon in the near future,” Makgane appealed.

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The Telegraph December 2

Digital edition of The Telegraph, December 2, 2020.