Windhoek – Long serving secretary general of the Namibia Football Association (NFA) Barry Rukoro has laughed off suggestions that failure to register its multi-million immovable property in its name was tantamount to ‘football capture’.
He says there are no sinister motives behind the dilly-dallying in registering the multi-million property but is, however, adamant the delay was a deliberate ploy to shield the association from potential debt collectors.
NFA boasts multi-million dollar assets – courtesy of handsome donations from the world’s football governing body FIFA and GIZ under the auspices of the German government as part of a bilateral agreement with their Namibian counterparts.
Local critic and political activist August Maletzky has been extremely vocal on social networks in fingering those at the helm of the country’s football presiding body as being economical with the truth, while withholding vital information with regard to the genuine value of the FIFA-sponsored NFA Football House.
Maletzky minces no words, saying Rukoro is being kept in office to protect his corrupt retired bosses from criminal prosecution: “To this second, Soccer House’s (Football House) title deed is still registered in the name of the City of Windhoek.”
The outspoken Maletzky warns pundits against what he terms “selective morality”, hot on the heels of the ongoing heavy debate and protests against the intended phosphate mining off Namibia’s shores.
“Are we being sincere on the issue of phosphate mining, yet we are silent on the massive corruption so prevalent at the NFA? To this minute, NFA Football House does not belong to the NFA,” he wrote.Approached to shed light on the legitimate concern as to why NFA’s property has not been registered in the name of its rightful owners (NFA)
Rukoro said the association is in an advanced stage of the process to establish a trust.
“We have a moral responsibility and obligation to protect public assets, hence the smart resolution to launch a trust that will ultimately be the sole holder of all NFA properties.”
Rukoro adds that the NFA’s decision to establish a trust was primarily aimed at preventing potential debtors from attaching NFA property.
“Despite our often fragile financial woes, I can reveal in all honesty that the incumbent NFA leadership has never at any stage borrowed money from financial institutions using the association’s assets as collateral value.
“It should be noted that nothing is cast in iron. We must guard against complacency and taking things for granted that a probable future irresponsible leadership would not abuse their power, going on a borrowing spree using the NFA assets as collateral value,” Rukoro said.
The NFA boasts multi-million dollar properties worth over N$50 million, inclusive of Football House, the Girls Centre and the yet-to-be-completed Hamlet Square Hotel at the NFA premises, adjacent to the NFA Technical Centre.
The latter is a state-of-the-art accommodation establishment and is expected to generate money for the association. In addition to these valuable assets, NFA is currently busy with the construction of other recreational projects at Omuthya, in the vastly populated Oshikoto Region. – This story originally appeared in the New Era Weekend newspaper.