Governing body gets its act together, with nonpayment of boxers being top of its
The chairperson of Boxing SA (BSA), Muditambi “Ntambi” Ravele, is confident that the governance and administration of local boxing is heading in the right direction. She says that there has been marked success at the governing body under her stewardship over the past 15 months, although there have been several challenges too.
Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula appointed Ravele in May last year.
She feels she has executed her duties well – despite criticism from some detractors.
In an exclusive interview with City Press, the articulate former teacher said the concerning issue of nonpayment of boxers was one of the BSA’s biggest challenges.
She was referring to the matters involving Premier Boxing League owner Dicksy Ngqula and promoter Siphatho Handi.
Ngqula has failed to pay a collective R1.6 million in prize money to four boxers who participated in the league’s final showdown in Mdantsane, East London, in February
Meanwhile, Handi recently had his licence suspended, as he failed to pay the R855 000 purse money he owed fighters.
“These nonpayments put us in a very bad position. We are working on that particular issue and have appointed a lawyer to assist us and make sure that we get the boxers paid,” she said.
Ravele added that the BSA had been advised to institute legal action.
“It was a big challenge but we are working on it.
“We want to improve our protection of boxers, especially when it comes to matters such as payment of fights,” she said.
However, Ravele said the BSA had also experienced challenges that had led to delays in processing payments.
More people have since been employed at the BSA to address this, and Ravele believes this will help to deal with financial matters faster.
She said the boxing body would in future ensure that whoever was promoting a fight made payment deposits upfront. Some of the BSA’s focus areas are: Boxing development; Increasing female participation in the sport;
Marketing and sponsorship, especially around broadcasting; and
Reviewing the Boxing Act and regulations governing the sport.
“Being instrumental in ending the SABC boxing blackout and returning live boxing broadcasts to TV was our biggest achievement as a board,” Ravele said.
“Promoters are more motivated by this move. Even though their fights are not covered, they are now staging more tournaments.
“We will announce another big tournament soon,” she added.
Ravele said she had presented a progress report and a plan to Mbabula after her first 100 days in office.
“We also presented this document to Parliament and they signed it off,” she said.
Ravele oversaw a restructuring process at the BSA, which resulted in staff suspensions and resignations.
“As a result, we ended up with more than seven vacancies. Out of those, we have finalised five positions.
“We are now just waiting for a final recommendation from the interviewing panel.”
She also revealed that the BSA had applied for funding from the national lottery to assist the organisation with a women’s empowerment programme.
“We will soon announce our roll-out plan,” she said.
Ravele said one of the most prominent women in boxing, promoter Mbali Zantsi, would be a beneficiary of this initiative.
Sylvia Mokaila, who is one of the country’s top female officials, will be another beneficiary.
She is doing well in her career and has even officiated on an international level, both as a referee and judge.
“We want to raise these women’s profiles since most South Africans do not even know them,” Ravele said.
AMBITIOUS BSA board chairperson Ntambi Ravele says a lot has been
PROMOTER Top boxing promoter Mbali Zantsi