It is with great sadness and an extreme disgrace to learn about the alleged incident that took place at the Golden Arrows offices, where it is understood that Cliffton Miheso who was employed by Golden Arrows at the time was forced to sign a termination letter at gun point. This has been confirmed by the reports from Kenyan Media Houses further confirmation and enlightenment was brought forward by the recordings where the player confirmed that indeed the allegations are true, we also conducted our own investigation as an Organization to the matter and the story remains unchanged.
The South African Football Players Union (SAFPU) wrote a letter to the Chairperson of Golden Arrows seeking clarity on the alleged incident but the response from Manto Madlala was neither here nor there, it did not speak to the fundamental question raised by the Union of footballers neither did her response dispute that the allegations took place. This poisonous issue centers on the rights of the workers in this country the freedom of expression and the right for players to either accept or reject certain conditions relating to their contractual matters.
We believe that all workers footballers included have the right to be properly engaged and be allowed to have an input when it comes to matters concerning their employment be it contract extension, termination, salary increment, Liquidation, sale of clubs just to mention a few. Incidents like these undermine the contractual stability not only in SA but on the continent and abroad. We have also copied SAFA on our correspondence and they never had the decency to acknowledge our letter and yet we are expected to regard them as a football authority in this country.
Their attitude suggests that they are an authority yes, but an authority that is captured and has no interest of football at heart in this country. We hope they will come to their senses and investigate this matter with the view to provide a solution. Again it would seem here that we are confronted with a story of a dog wagging the tail, instead of the other way around. This continues to prove that clubs are the law unto themselves players rights are continuously trampled on they are repeatedly victimized, abused physically, emotionally and exploited on a daily basis yet this act is treated like a general common conduct by our justice system in football which is very disturbing and sad to say the least.
We will never shy away from addressing or dealing with matters that seek to erode the gains we have fought so hard for as workers. If these allegations are not properly attended to they will undermine and belittle the gains we made as the country, if not addressed they will unintentionally weather the gains workers of this country and the world fought so hard to attain. It is our held view that the investigations will get to the bottom of this matter and those who are found to have transgressed any rule or law should face the might of the law.
The investigations will do one of the two, uphold the allegations as truthful or reject the claims made, if the claims are rejected surely South Africa will continue to be seen as the country that champions and respects the right of the workers and if not then the law must take its course.
If the Chairperson of Golden Arrows champions and aligns herself to the principled ethics of the labour laws of the land, if she distances herself from the barbaric conduct exercised by her employees and was disgusted like the rest of us when we heard these embarrassing sickening reports, if she deeply cares about the wellbeing of her players as the Owner of Golden Arrows, while have we not heard news that the perpetrators (Mr Masondo and company) have been fired with immediate effect because that is the only punishment that best fits the nature of this crime.
As an organization we were not shocked when these allegations broke out because we have always had difficulties of being accorded the right to meet with Golden Arrows players at their workplace. We are well aware that the union is not allowed at the premises to see players despite all our hard efforts to do so. We also know that players at Arrows are threatened not to join the union and the few that were found to be members are victimized by the club.
The Labor Laws are lucid in saying unions must organize workers at their workplace but Golden Arrows continuously locks all doors forcefully from the Union . Players are denied their democratic right to belong to any Trade Union of their choice. The conduct of clubs such as what we are subjected to at Golden Arrows F.C when it comes to meeting the players gives credence to the allegations made by the player (Miheso) which were later confirmed to be true.
It becomes clear now why the Union is not allowed at their premises to educate players about their rights and the benefits they stand to gain by joining SAFPU. Possibly there are a lot more similar cases of this nature at Golden Arrows and other Clubs that are never reported, out of fear and intimidation endured by the players from the Club Bosses.
If one reads Golden Arrows attitude towards the Union it tells that there is a lot more that could be hidden behind the curtain and such matters must be investigated further because our players cannot suffer in silence in our democratic country.
Regardless of the efforts from some of the clubs to wish us away we will never back down in fact we will keep moving because we believe that if you stand, you fall and if you fall, you will perish and SAFPU will never perish.
We are an organization that exists to protect and defend the rights of the players and we will stop at nothing to see that justice prevails.
For more information:
Facebook: South African Football Players Union Twitter: @SAFPU_Official ENDS. Media queries can be directed to: Vusi Ntimane 011 339 1906 OR 076 423 3126 firstname.lastname@example.org