By FOCUS REPORTER
The President of the Soweto Local Football Association (SLFA) Phil Mogodi has been suspended from all football activities for five years. The decision to suspend Mogodi with immediate effect was handed down by the National Disciplinary Committee of the South African Football Association (SAFA).
Mogodi and two other officials from the SLFA, Peter Thuntsane and Shadrack Hlophe were found guilty of gross misconduct and bringing the Association into disrepute. The trio are suspended for three years from all football activities with Mogodi’s sanctions running concurrently.
In handing down judgement, the SAFA disciplinary committee acknowledged the trio’s contribution to football, but at the same time viewed their action in a very serious light for having led the teams to march and gather illegally at the house of the general secretary of SAFA Johannesburg.
The SAFA DC findings read in part: “The loss of such resourceful persons from football is regrettable. However, it is important to balance the interest of society and the offence for which a person has been charged. We find that their conduct was serious and warrants censure. We also find it appropriate to suspend all three respondents from all football activities under the auspices of SAFA for a period of 3 years, with immediate effect.”
SAFA President Kirsten Nematandani says all members of the Association are equal under the SAFA constitution.
“As the custodian of the SAFA constitution I’m duty bound to ensure that all of us comply with our statutes. No one is bigger than football, and we have committed ourselves to rid our game of any distractions coming from all levels of our structures. We believe in good governance and we urge our members to use our statutes and internal processes in pursuing or challenging matters affecting the Association. Protest marches and interruptions of matches are behaviours that are foreign to football, and in particular organised football as defined by our constitution and the FIFA statutes. Football has many platforms for members to channel their grievances, we have standing committee meetings, national executive committee meetings, management committee meetings and the general council, this are legitimate platforms for members to utilise in mitigating football challenges of any nature;” said Nematandani.