Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Chiefs’ management blames third force as players boycott game

A mere six days after putting a commendable fight against league champions Township Rollers, Mochudi Centre Chiefs now finds itself in a spot of bother as players refused to turn up for a scheduled BTC Premiership match.

According to sources, the players refused to board the bus for their clash against Miscellaneous in Serowe demanding they be paid their dues as was agreed.

The problem is said to have come after the management failed to pay players’ salaries in full despite assuring them they will be paid all their dues after the Rollers game.

Despite the game being played inside a fully packed University of Botswana (UB) Stadium, the Chiefs is said to have reneged on their promise to pay in full saying they had not made enough monies during the said game.

It is said post the management’s failure to honour their promise, the players refused to train demanding they be paid first. Leading to the Friday debacle, the players are said to have warned the team hierarchy that if not paid, they will boycott training and games until what is due to them is paid.

Reached for comment, Chiefs chairperson Raymond Tsheko deflected the criticism against the management failures, blaming ‘a third force’ for the problems. Tsheko explained that they tried their best to convince the players and explained to them what delayed their payment.

“The problem is not the rift between the players and the management. The major problem is the third force that misleading the players against the management,” the Chiefs Chairman explained.

Tsheko said the third force has infiltrated the camp and offering the player advice that is not informed by anything.

“We have paid the players half salaries because that is the only money we can afford and we have never shied from telling them that we will pay them all their dues once the money is there,” explained Tsheko.

He further explained that the ‘sold out’ encounter against Rollers did not make the money they had anticipated as supporters forced themselves into the stadium without paying.

Tsheko confirmed that they had indeed promised to pay their players after the game but said the payment took time to be made due to the processes involved.

“The team is selling tickets through e-ticketing and the tickets are sold at choppies outlets. After the tickets are sold the money is sent to e-ticketing service providers and later the money will be deposited into the team’s account,” he explained.

“The whole process takes 3-5 days and we told the player that the money is not yet in our accounts once the money is deposited they will be paid what is due to them. The third force advised them against obliging to our plea and request,” Tsheko narrated.

It is not the first time that Magosi as chiefs is commonly called by its affectionate supporters, has faced players’ boycott over unpaid salaries.

At one point in the past season, a game had to be called off because it did not bring enough players for the matches.

Meanwhile, a peeved Tsheko concluded by sending a cautionary message to the alleged ‘third force,’ warning them they will answer for the mess at Chiefs.

“Anybody who does things that are not good must be able and ready to face the consequences,” he warned.

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The Telegraph September 30

Digital edition of The Telegraph, September 30, 2020.