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NFA Secured Funding For The League

Funding has been secured for all leagues under the Namibia Football Association which intends to kickstart all divisions simultaneously once the coronavirus pandemic subsides. The NFA gave this guarantee in a circular sent to its affiliates on Sunday.

“I am pleased to share with you that all measures and preparations to establish the top-tier league and the start of the first division, second division and the Women's Super League are at an advanced stage,” NFA president Ranga Haikali said in the memo. MTC also committed N$4,5 million annually for the next three years to revive the FA Cup. “Accept my assurance that the funding not dependable on any sponsorship at this moment has been secured,” he added before taking a swipe at his critics.

“All resources are in place, football under the capable custodianship and control of the NFA is going to commence. Let us all not be shaken by detractors.” The detractors appear to have thrown a spanner in the NFA's works of establishing a new top-flight division in place of the axed Namibia Premier League, with a number of clubs undecided about where their loyalties lie.

League champions Black Africa, Blue Waters and Citizens are all publicly embroiled in a tug of war over whether the clubs should fall under the NFA's top-tier league or the NPL, which is plotting a professional league with no ties to the national football association. BA's interim management on Friday declared their unwavering support for the NPL. However, a group of diehard supporters led by former interim chairperson Cassius Moetie wants the club to align with the NFA.

Likewise, Citizens is literally split down the middle with co-owners Dawid Goagoseb and George Ochurub threatening legal action against each other. Goagoseb wants Citizens to play under the NFA and Ochurub prefers the NPL. Each one has 50% ownership rights. In keeping with the disjointed football theme, Blue Waters management are also pulling in different directions over affiliation. Four club executives wrote to the Namibia Sports Commission last week to denounce club chairman Daniel Imbili's support of the NFA.

The sports commission is examining the NPL's proposal to be recognised as a rival national football sports body or professional league beyond the NFA's jurisdiction. The four Blue Waters executives – Albertus Shitatu, Armando Satchipia, Abraham Hangula and Knowledge Iipinge – claim Iimbili is an ex officio executive member who “has on numerous occasions violated material provisions of the Blue Waters Sports Club constitution”. They “have no objection whatsoever towards the current efforts to transform the Namibia Premier League into a professional league”.

Imbili disputes their claim, saying he is still the club's administrative secretary “authorised to deal with the administration of club matters”. He also said: “Blue Waters has been and will remain an affiliate member of the NFA and all its structures until otherwise communicated by the highest authority of the club.” The NFA has given all 16 clubs that “are members of the expelled NPL” until 23 August to sign up to the new league. “Please note that no extension of the date will be tolerated,” Haikali cautioned. “It is up to the 16 clubs to decide themselves whether they want to play association football under the NFA.

“The NFA will decide afterwards what process or procedures to follow to fill any gaps in the case that there are clubs who decide not to play association football under the NFA,” he said. Clubs who miss the deadline will not be able to register their players with Fifa. Registration of players in terms of the Fifa eConnect programme will commence soon, said Haikali. “Please note that the registration of players (TMS and ITS) is a Fifa programme and is only administered by Fifa through its member associations (MAs) and in our case this is exclusively operated, administrated and controlled by the Namibia Football Association,” Haikali noted.

“This programme entails the assessment and data collection of all the clubs in the various regions. Next will be the procurement of all hardware and software and a training programme to all before the registration of the players in terms of the eConnect programme.” Meanwhile, the NFA has also activated phase two of the 'Hamlet Project', which entails renovating its headquarters and revamping of the technical centre
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