No, Kaizer! Not in your name, please!

CityPress - - Sport - S’Bu­siso Mse­leku sm­se­leku@city­ Follow me on Twit­ter @Sbu_Mse­leku

Kaizer “Chin­cha Gu­luva” Mo­taung is one of the foot­ball ad­min­is­tra­tors I re­spect the most.

To find a true gen­tle­man in the sport, you don’t have to look any fur­ther than him.

What he has done, since leav­ing Or­lando Pi­rates in 1969, is hu­mon­gous and his achieve­ments are leg­endary.

How­ever, the story of goal­keeper Bruce Bvuma, which was bro­ken by Sun­day World last month and taken fur­ther by Sowe­tan this week, leaves a bit­ter taste in the mouth.

To those who might not be fa­mil­iar with the story, it goes that Bvuma, who was roped into the Kaizer Chiefs first team in March fol­low­ing in­juries to their two reg­u­lar goal­keep­ers, is on a R5 000 monthly salary.

Ini­tially, the club de­nied this and said the play­ers’ union had re­vealed a fig­ure con­tained in the player’s ap­pren­tice con­tract.

How­ever, this week’s story opened a fur­ther can of worms as it was con­firmed that the 22-year-old player was in­deed be­ing paid

R5 000 a month on con­tract, which in­creased to R8 000 on July 1. Ac­cord­ing to the con­tract, he will earn R15 000 in 2020 – when he turns 25.

If this is in­deed the case, it is a cry­ing shame.

The news­pa­per also car­ried a copy of a sec­tion of the con­tract, which bore what is re­port­edly Mo­taung’s sig­na­ture.

If this is true, it is in sharp con­trast to the Chin­cha who left Pi­rates un­der protest and in sol­i­dar­ity with play­ers ex­pelled by the club.

Be­sides his im­pec­ca­ble record as an as­tute busi­ness­man, Mo­taung has also en­trenched him­self as an ac­tivist.

He was at the coal­face of the big 1985 soc­cer split that led to the for­ma­tion of the Na­tional Soc­cer League – from the Na­tional Pro­fes­sional Soc­cer League and their then mother body the SA Na­tional Foot­ball As­so­ci­a­tion (Sanfa).

The break­away was caused by the in­jus­tice that pro­fes­sional foot­ball clubs en­dured un­der the iron-fist rule of Sanfa.

Even Chiefs was founded on sound prin­ci­ples that in­cluded look­ing af­ter their play­ers and pay­ing them well.

In ex­change, the play­ers were ex­pected to be good am­bas­sadors for the club wher­ever they went, even af­ter re­tire­ment.

So Bvuma’s case is in stark con­trast to that for which we be­lieve Chiefs stand.

I call on Mo­taung to take this mat­ter se­ri­ously, in­ves­ti­gate it and cor­rect it.

Although me­nial tasks such as the sign­ing of play­ers, as well as the struc­tur­ing of their salar­ies, might not di­rectly fall un­der his am­bit, the buck stops with him.

Mo­taung is also the chair of the Pre­mier Soc­cer League fi­nance com­mit­tee, a money-spin­ner that re­cently doled out mil­lions to its clubs to help them pre­pare for the up­com­ing sea­son, along with per­for­mance bonuses to ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee mem­bers, of which he is one.

One hopes that rather than em­bark on child­ish, puni­tive mea­sures against the player – who seems to be an in­no­cent vic­tim at this stage – Amakhosi will do the right thing and fix this mess.

It would be even more sad, and leave South African foot­ball with yet an­other black eye, if the player who has fea­tured for Bafana Bafana suf­fered fur­ther vic­tim­i­sa­tion be­cause of this mat­ter.

In­stead, the club should learn from this de­ba­cle and never again get caught up in such an em­bar­rass­ing sit­u­a­tion.

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