Windhoek – Speaking to New Era Sport strictly on condition of anonymity, a group of employees from the seemingly financially crippled Namibia Football Association (NFA) yesterday vented their frustrations over the delayed payment of their May salaries.
Although a few employees refused to comment on the unfolding calamity when contacted – obviously out of fear – New Era Sport however established through reliable sources within the NFA that all the association’s employees will only receive their salaries for May on Friday (June 3) and not by yesterday, as usually scheduled at the end of the month.
“Yes it was communicated that our salaries will only be paid in by Friday but they (management) should have communicated the delay to all employees earlier, because some of us have multiple stop orders on our various accounts, which will obviously go off tonight (last night). I mean imagine those who have cars and other huge stop orders to pay tonight, it’s just not fair at all,” said one very concerned employee.
Another peeved employee who also spoke to New Era Sport had this to say: “If the NFA is going through financial difficulties, they (management) should be open with us and communicate such things earlier. You can’t expect people to be happy but such serious actions were communicated only a few days to payday. It’s just not good at all as we all have families to look after. Maybe some of us here will go a day or two [without being paid] as they might have access to overdraft facilities at their respective banks, but some of us like myself don’t have such luxuries.”
Approached for comment, NFA Secretary General Barry Rukoro confirmed that there will be a delay in the payment of all the employees’ salaries, insisting that it was clearly communicated with all employees and nobody had a problem.
“Yes, all NFA employees will receive their salaries by Friday and not today as usual. Everyone at the office is very much aware of the delay and nobody has complained – so what is the fuss all about and why are you calling me over such nonsense? How is it even newsworthy and did any NFA employee call or write a letter to complain about the delay of salaries?” queried a clearly agitated Rukoro.
“Please don’t ever call me over such stupid things again, I’m busy doing other better things and don’t have time to answer stupid questions. In fact, don’t ever call me again – it’s the end of our relationship professionally. My brother, if that’s how you want to operate then I want nothing to do with you. Go ahead and write whatever you want I don’t care!” fumed Rukoro before hanging up.
In another separate report carried by the Namibia Press Agency (Nampa) on their website yesterday, Rukoro was also quoted by the agency confirming that the national women’s team, the Brave Gladiators, are yet to receive their outstanding appearance fees/salaries dating back to when they last played against Zambia in the 2016 Confederation of African Football (CAF) Women Nations’ Cup qualifier. The Women Nations’ Cup is slated for Cameroon from
November 19 to December 3 this year.
In that interview with Nampa, which brought to the fore NFA’s financial crisis, Rukoro confirmed that the association is experiencing a financial meltdown, which resulted in them failing to meet financial obligations as far as players’ wages are concerned.
“This is the first time in 15 or 20 years that this is happening, and it is not just the players. I am also not paid. We do not have to pay players first, we have to make sure our girls play first. You choose to play football. You associate by choice, and that is why it is called the NFA,” Rukoro is further quoted with no indication when the players will be paid.
“We are not saying that the players will not be paid, but we cannot use money we do not have. We have to make decisions; these decisions and those responsibilities are ours. Yes they are not paid, but they are not alone,” reads the Nampa story.