Namibia Football Association (NFA), Namibia Premier League (NPL), Namibia Women’s football desk and Referees desk are all accommodated at Football House for the sole purpose of ensuring the smooth running and handling of domestic football and all related activities as per the rules, regulations and statutes of Federation of International Football (FIFA).
The above mentioned bodies are all juristic persons that can independently take charge of their affairs. The ultimate goal therefore, would be to ensure that football is played and that the value chain of football must be well oiled at all times, including grassroots levels and all divisions.
It is an open secret that all is not well at the Football House and for this reason, I will single out the mother body, NFA and the country’s flagship football league NPL whose leadership is enraged in never ending power struggles.
As a result of their power struggles, the very important stakeholder, players are being deprived of their only source of income. The leadership of these two bodies are being salaried every month either through the bodies they served or via other incomes – the moral of the fact is players are hungry and the leadership is not affected.
In football, we have very important stakeholders which at this juncture I don’t want to dissect. Football stakeholders are fully aware of behind the scene manoeuvrings regarding the power struggles amongst the leadership that also impacted so badly and negatively on the affairs of football in general at Football House.
Some stakeholders are very crucial but they must know where their roles starts and ends and must not at any other given platform meddle into the operations/affairs of football.
We were made to believe that the resignation of the former NPL Chairperson Johny Doeseb would pave the way for sponsorship and the league to resume forthwith – yet the league still has not started because of mere power struggles and leadership wrangles.
After the resignation of Doeseb, an Interim NPL Committee was elected by the Board of Governors (BoG) of the 16 NPL representative teams. The Committee was mandated amongst other things to spearhead the sponsorship issue and to hold its elective congress within six months. All these happened under the knowledge and watchful eyes of the country’s football controlling body NFA.
The NFA leadership accompanied the NPL Interim Committee to State house with potential sponsors in attendance and boastfully assured the nation that the league will kick-off and everyone seemed so delighted about the prospects of the league to finally kick-off.
Little did we know that NFA leadership had other ideas only known to themselves. The NPL Interim Committee announced 12th May 2017 as the official kick-off date and were given the go-ahead by the potential sponsors.
Here comes big brother, NFA, the custodian of football in the country and declared the Interim Committee illegal and as they say, the rest is history but as the saying goes history still continues to be written. Wonders shall never cease to amaze me.
The following questions sprung to my mind. Why didn’t the NFA and its leadership before and after the election of the Interim NPL Interim Committee enlighten them about their illegality? Why did the very same NFA and its leadership accompany the illegal NPL Interim Committee to Statehouse? To achieve what? In a nutshell, they deliberately deceived the Head of the State as Patron of NFA and all football stakeholders.
The very same NFA and its leadership turned-around and installed an illegally constituted Ad hoc-Committee to take charge of the almost already concluded sponsorship deal. Whose real interest was NFA and its leadership serving or blocking the deal? What added value would the signing of sponsorship deal by NFA’s Ad hoc Committee brought to the table that shouldn’t have been brought by NPL’s Interim Committee?
This is a clear and distinct indication that the NFA and its leadership is and has been abusing or “power taking’’ the power. It appears there is inconsistency in terms of consistency.
The NFA and its leadership has become the judge, jury and prosecutor and a law unto themselves whilst its conveniently interpreting and applying the rules and regulations governing the game of football to suit its own interest.
People are elected into leadership positions to interpret and apply the rules and laws without fear or favour. Certainly not because you don’t favour, like, respect or disrespect the other legally elected body or its representative. That is the reason why we have unending leadership squabbles and power struggles that take us nowhere, which symbolizes the organized chaos at Football House. There is no objectivity in elected leaders.
I personally don’t have any issues with the leadership of NFA, but the latest twist of events couldn’t allow me to remain mum. I believe fellow Namibians share the same sentiments.
What even surprises me is the fact that Namibia Sports Commission (NSC) cited with the NFA and rubber-stamped the purported illegality of the Interim NPL Committee. Does the leadership of NSC understand its mandate and the manner to deal with issues of such nature?
The way they handled the NFA/NPL saga has created lots to be desired. NSC has blundered or ‘’palookered’’ big time. They put their credibility at stake seriously a big ‘’NO’’. Instead of correcting the wrongs, they resorted to correct the wrong with the wrong, simply put.
Nevertheless, NPL and its leadership must also get its house in order, the league is also at war with itself. Selfishness and self interest amongst its leadership is also a detriment to football. They should desist from making use of NPL platforms other than the football matters to advance their ill-conceived interests.
Lastly, the NFA leadership and NPL leadership must really for the sake of football bury the hatchet only known to themselves and come together as one, for the ultimate purpose of football and nothing else. Once these very important two bodies start speaking the same football language, everything will fall into place. It is natural to have differences, but still remember the ultimate goal.
There will always be differences of opinion in football and amongst fans of different teams before and after a match i.e. certain supporters boasting of their chances to emerge victorious, referee shouldn’t have awarded a penalty; it was an offside goal, the ball was out of play etc. But there must never be differences of opinion when standing rules, regulations and statues governing the game of football are interpreted and applied without fear or favour.
It is against the above narrative, that I’m simply implying that there is organized chaos at Football House. If not, let us in unison inform the Federation of International Football Association (FIFA) that our house is on fire because of organized chaos at Football House. I rest my case!
Note: The views expressed here are solely of Jefta M.Gaoab and not necessarily that of the club (Touch & Go FC) he represents. (The letter is published verbatim.)