By Kuvee Kangueehi
The First National Bank (FNB) Corporate Communications Manager Cassius Moetie has apologized to the Namibia Football Association (NFA) after a heated exchange of words between the two institutions last week.
The argument erupted between the two institutions after the NFA refused to make the Brave Warriors available for a friendly match against an invitational team of the Namibia Premier League (NPL), as part of the FNB Cup launch.
FNB Group CEO Vekuii Rukoro publicly criticized the NFA, accusing its officials of taking decisions without considering the consequences
However, FNB now acknowledges that it did not follow the right procedures in organizing the game with the Brave Warriors.
Instead of approaching the NFA Secretariat to seek permission, the FNB contacted the Brave Warriors coach Ben Bamfichule. In a letter written to the NFA, Moetie says the oversight was not to undermine the administration of the NFA.
“I would like to reiterate my sincere apology, and regret the consequences this bureaucracy caused between FNB and NFA and assure you that the plan to feature the Brave Warriors was only taken with the best interest of football at heart.”
Meanwhile, the FNB Cup will kick off tomorrow with the eight teams in Group A travelling to the coastal town of Walvis Bay in the lucrative N$500 000 tournament.
Premier League rookies Mighty Gunners and defending champions Civics FC will be the first to take the field in an early afternoon kickoff at 14:00 at the Kuisebmund Stadium.
This is the third edition of the FNB Cup under the current contract between the Namibia Football Consortium and the NFA, wherein FNB has so far invested N$7.5million in Namibian football development alone over the past three years.
The FNB Cup is the first official tournament following the kick-off of the football season, and the purpose of the FNB Cup is to expedite the match and ball fitness levels of Namibia’s footballers, to urgently fit in and meet the requirements of Brave Warriors coach, Ben Bamfichule, and other national selectors when the senior national team will engage in the AFCON 2008 in Ghana and the Under 20 national team will participate in the COSAFA tournament, starting December 8 in Windhoek.
The second match of Group A will start at 16:00 between Golden Bees and Black Africa. The latter produced impressive results in their last first three league commitments.
It is the second time that Black Africa is drawn against Golden Bees in the FNB Cup.
The two clashed fiercely in the quarter-finals at the same venue, Kuisebmund Stadium where Golden Bees gave the Lively Lions a good run for their money, but the experience of players like Lollo Goraseb, Moses Katjiteo and others were instrumental in stamping the superiority of BA over Golden Bees in that nerve-wracking encounter.
Golden Bees remember that defeat and vowed revenge against Black Africa who also won, amongst other tournaments, the FNB Charity Cup in a final against Blue Waters at the Khomasdal Stadium in 2005.
The winners will receive a whopping N$170 000, while the losing finalists will walk away with N$70 000.
N$20 000 is at stake for the two losing semi-finalists. The FNB Cup final will be staged later at the end of the year on December 1.