Tuesday, December 6, 2022

Rollers threaten to implode in the face of Ratanang fiasco

Township Rollers is facing possible implosion in the aftermath of its alleged ‘unprocedural registration’ of defender Onkarabile Ratanang.

With allegations of fraud also cropping up, sources say the matter is also threatening the future of the team as its president and financier Jagdish Shah threatens to dump the beleaguered team.

An insider at the team alleges that the Rollers financier has already informed those close to him he intends to dump the team if it loses Ratanang’s case at the player status committee.

“Shah has told some at Rollers that he will dump the team if the issue of Ratanang ends up implicating Rollers in any wrong doing,” said the source.

The source further informed Sunday Standard Sport that Shah has since told his management that he cannot commit to renew contracts of players that are coming to an end in June.

“He can’t commit because he doesn’t know what verdict will come from the player’s status committee. He is adamant that when Rollers is implicated for wrong doings, he will dump the team,” said the source.

BFA conflict resolution committees are destined to meet in the near future to determine the truth of what led to the ‘fraudulent’ registration of Ratang outside the transfer window.

“The BFA Secretariat conducted investigations into the registration of Township Rollers player, Onkarabile Ratanang. The investigations have revealed that the player was registered outside the BFA registration period.

The BFA registration period was from 13th July 2021 to the 30th September 2021 and the player was registered on the 28th of October 2021. The registration of the player was done contrary to the rules and statutes of the BFA,” a statement from BFA reads.

Already, two officials from Rollers and a former BFA employee who is alleged to have been implicated in the registration of Ratanang have been suspended from footballing activities.

The two Rollers officials, General Manager Sydney Magagane and Team Manager Motshegetsi Mafa, are suspended pending a disciplinary hearing. The other person involved, former BFA competitions Manager Setete Phuthego, has on the other hand been given an indefinite suspension from football and all footballing activities.

The BFA NEC resolved to refer the matter of the player to the BFA Players Status Committee for final determination and to refer Township Rollers Football Club to the BFL Disciplinary Committee for appropriate sanctioning.

Contacted for comment former BFA competition manager, Phuthego said “I only heard it on the social media. I haven’t received any correspondence from BFA,” said Phuthego.

Information from within BFA is that once the matter is resolved, it will be reported to FIFA for ratification as the owners of football. “It is the FIFA system that was breached and it is our obligation as custodians of their product in Botswana to report when these things happen,” BFA Chief Executive Officer Mfolo Mfolo explained. Meanwhile, sources within Lekidi have informed this publication that a possible case of fraud will be reported to the Botswana Police Service.  “Some leaders within the BFA have resolved to report the matter to the police so that they can be seen to be clean and to protect the image of the BFA on the stakeholders. Also, if the issue is reported to the police, it will save BFA integrity at CAF and FIFA to show that they abide by the laws and can be trusted,” said the source.

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