Chairman of the Namibia Premier League (NPL), Johnny ‘JJD’ Doeseb, yesterday came out guns blazing against his detractors for calling on him to step down, saying they should rather address issues at hand and not his persona.
A clearly irate Doeseb strongly cautioned so-called “third forces” within local football to keep their hidden agendas at bay, and rather redirect their energy to activities that would help bring fruitful solutions to the problems currently being faced by Namibian football in general and the NPL in particular.
A few months ago, the NPL was left financially spineless when its principal sponsor and long-term partner, MTC, withdrew its commitment of a three-year sponsorship of N$15 million to the league, which was on condition that the NPL first finds an additional sponsor to cover the N$9 million deficit of the NPL’s envisaged N$24 million total budget – but the NPL failed to secure an additional sponsor and thus left MTC with no option but to revoke their commitment of N$15 million towards the NPL.
Since then, the league has faced an assortment of challenges with clubs and players all up in arms demanding the immediate start of league activities, while various well-informed and some ill-informed armchair critics have also come out calling for the removal of Doeseb as NPL chairman.
In his response, Doeseb spared no words in telling all armchair critics to know their places as far as the football setup is concerned, warning them not to abuse the current financial situation to advance their own agendas.
“I mean who are they to tell me to step down in the first place, and what have they done for Namibian football? We are all frustrated by the situation the NPL finds itself in, and by the fact that the league can’t kick off, but we have to collectively try and find solutions to the problem, rather than try to take advantage of this situation to make Doeseb look bad, or thinking they know better than others. If people are serious about helping the NPL and players find a sponsor for the league, then they should stop holding secret meetings and working in cahoots, trying to topple the current leadership – they should rather come forward with solutions and not such nonsense,” fumed Doeseb.
Labelling his critics a bunch of ingrates, Doeseb went on to clarify the NPL’s decision not to hold its annual general meeting at the present time, saying without a sponsor it would be pointless to hold an AGM.
“Look, previously we would hold our AGM at least a month before the league kicks off, and well within the confines of MTC’s financial calendar, and after that we would kick off with league activities within the next 14 days just after the AGM, as per our constitution. But now we can’t hold an AGM and kick off the league 14 days after the AGM, because we currently don’t have a sponsor, and thus it would be pointless to hold an AGM and then not kick off the league within the lawfully prescribed 14 days – we will be contradicting our own constitution.”