Rivals eye SAFA presidency
Danny Jordaan (Gallo Images)
Johannesburg - Danny Jordaan and "Shoes" Mazibuko will go toe-to-toe on Saturday in a bid to succeed outgoing SA Football Association president Kirsten Nematandani.
"This is an ironical twist to the elections," said Nematandani, who has no chance of being re-elected because he did not receive any nominations from the 52 Safa regional associations.
"I cannot deny a pang of disappointment over the turn of events. My objective when I took over as president was to unite the opposing factions that exist in South African soccer and I never wavered on this principle.
"But the job is only half done. Now, it would seem, divisions are again set to escalate. Administrators like Danny [Jordaan] and Shoes [Mazibuko] are both needed in the soccer set-up and should be working together. Not fighting each other for power."
Mazibuko piloted Nematandani into the post of Safa president four years ago.
Apparently disillusioned by the Transformation Forum group in which Jordaan and Mazibuko were at one time both prominent influences, Mazibuko and a sizeable wing of the organisation became disillusioned with its objectives.
They courted PSL chairman and Orlando Pirates boss Irvin "The Iron Duke" Khoza to stand as a powerful candidate for the Safa presidency.
The move, however, was stymied by the disclosure of a resolution in the Safa constitution that prevents a club owner from becoming president of the national association.
Attempts to scrap the ruling faltered over the fact that it required a two-thirds majority among the Safa regions.
Mazibuko was then launched as the candidate to oppose Jordaan and the existing supporters within the Transformation Forum.
A big question now regarding Saturday's crucial election centres round whether the considerable support that would have gone Khoza's way will now align itself to Mazibuko.
Meanwhile, the 55-year-old Nematandani said that after 25 years of service to various segments within the Safa organisation, he did not intend to back out of the soccer set-up.
"Soccer is a significant part of my life and this is not going to change now.
"I will be ready to serve Safa, Caf, and Fifa wherever required."