One of Namibia’s leading football agents James April, better known as Collin in football circles, is under scrutiny over alleged misappropriation of transfer money owed to a local MTC Premiership club.
Coastal outfit LHU Blue Waters are crying foul accusing April of playing the hide and seek game with them in the aftermath of the club’s most prized asset striker Hendrik “Ballack” Somaeb’s much-trumpeted sale to South African Professional Soccer League (PSL) Free State Stars, last year.
According to documents and proof of payment statements in New Era’s possession, Stars paid a total amount of N$150 000 into the bank account of April in November last year. The transfer fee was supposed to be handed over to the chief beneficiaries Blue Waters. In addition, April also received N$50 000, which he claims was for handling fees.
New Era Sport sought clarification as to why the money was not transferred directly into the Blue Waters account. April is adamant Nedbank South Africa was unable to facilitate the transfer, notwithstanding the fact that they have several branches locally.
Although the payment was effected in November last year, Blue Waters only received a portion of the transfer fee (N$70 000) in April this year after enquiring about the delayed payment. So what happened to the remaining N$80 000?
In his own submission, April says he transferred N$95 000 into the account of former Blue Waters head coach/chief administrator Paulus Shipnaga, who assisted him with Somaeb’s transfer. Although Shipanga admits to have received money from April, he vehemently disputes the mentioned figure.
“You will recall that when I left Blue Waters earlier this year the parting was unceremonious to say the least. The club still owed me money, that’s why I saw it fit to withhold an amount of N$25 000. I informed the club accordingly,” says Shipanga. Nonetheless, the club has no interest to pursue Shipanga or hold him accountable for any losses suffered during the soured deal.
“He (Shipanga) is no longer a member of this club and was never mandated to act on behalf of Blue Waters. So we therefore hold April solely accountable for the outstanding N$80 000.”
Asked when he will be able to settle the outstanding amount, a clearly shaken April confessed to owing the club money, but was quick to point out that he would only settle N$55 000, urging the club to recover the remaining N$25 000 from Shipanga.