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Irvin Khoza
ABSA Premiership increases prize money by 50%
26 June 2019, 8:49 PM

The Absa Premiership prize money for the league champions has been increased by 50 percent from the previous season.

Chairman of the League, Irvin Khoza made an announcement at the Premier Soccer League (PSL) offices on Wednesday afternoon.

There has been an outcry for many years for the prize money to go up, as many opinions suggested that the R10 million was not a sufficient reward for the amount of matches played in a season.

Absa Premiership clubs will be eager to go all out to claim the new prize money on offer. The financial package that is exclusive to the Premiership division receives an increment for the first time in almost a decade.

The 50% increase on the previous prize money will see those crowned champions take home R15 million. The runners up will receive R7,5 million.

“I think the prize money is very important because of the structure of the league and we are hoping to be more than this going forward because I think 240 games – 30 games per team is a very testing period of any competition. So you want that when you win, you feel that it was worth your while,” says Khoza.

The title sponsor felt that it deserved to review their long standing relationship with the PSL and increase the prize money.

“I think the fans are the beneficiaries. The quality of football will improve. The quality of the players will improve and ultimately the quality of our communities will improve,” says Oscar Siziba who is from ABSA.

The banking institution will also provide financial management package offered to the players, clubs and it’s technical teams.

“What we do to encourage the players is also to start thinking about life after football so that we can see them starting their own businesses. We can see them go back to school we can see them starting something for their communities ploughing back. We have seen the few that have taken that initiative but there are so many young players that are starting up at an early age and they lack the financial literacy and we want to bring it back as part of our relationship with the PSL to allow these players to see possibilities in football to see their dreams coming true in football,” says Siziba.

This development comes at a time when financial education is a huge concern amongst local footballers.

Fixtures for the 2018/19 season were also unveiled with the League scheduled to kick-off in August.

The Pretoria derby will headline the start of the new campaign when title holders Mamelodi Sundowns take on rivals SuperSport United.

Kenneth Omeruo
Nigeria’s momentum pushes them to AFCON knockout stages
26 June 2019, 8:21 PM

Nigeria became the first side to advance to the knockout stage of the Africa Cup of Nations on Wednesday as they beat Guinea 1-0, having taken more than an hour to break the deadlock for the second straight match.

Nigeria centre back Kenneth Omeruo scored the only goal of the game after 73 minutes, rising unchallenged to head home a corner from Moses Simon at the Alexandria Stadium.

It was Nigeria’s second Group B win from two games but was another testing encounter after they beat Burundi 1-0 in their opener having taken 77 minutes to break down the resilient rookies.

Nigeria, six points guarantees progress to the last 16 after a major improvement in their form from the opening game of the tournament.

Nigeria changed their approach and sought to use the flanks with Simon on the right wing and Ahmed Musa on the left among five changes to the starting line-up made by coach Gernot Rohr.

The impact was almost immediate as Simon beat his marker to deliver an inviting square pass inside the second minute, but Alex Iwobi hesitated and the chance was lost.

Musa then gave notice of the threat he might pose with a surging run and delivery from which Odion Ighalo could have scored had his first touch not allowed the ball to bounce away from him.

Simon got away again down the right just after the half-hour mark, with Ighalo galloping up in tandem.

Simon did not deliver the pass, however, and chose to go on his own instead, hitting the side netting from a tight angle.

After the break, Iwobi’s shot forced a save from Guinea goalkeeper Ibrahim Kone, who was included in the team after coach Paul Put criticised the performance of Aly Keita in Guinea’s 2-2 draw with debutants Madagascar in their opening game.

Kone also punched away a free kick just after the hour mark from Nigeria midfielder Oghenekaro Etebo.

Guinea’s Naby Keita started his first match since he suffered an adductor injury playing for Liverpool against Barcelona on May 1, but he was taken off after 70 minutes having received several knocks in the game.

ANC
Free State ANC to deal with expelled councillors
26 June 2019, 8:11 PM

Concerned African National Congress (ANC) members in QwaQwa in the eastern Free State want the party to deal swiftly in resolving a dispute of the 16 expelled councillors at the Maluti-a-Phofung Municipality.

The group was axed after they were found guilty of voting with the opposition in removing former mayor Vusi Tshabalala.

The group’s leader, Mongezi Malaoane, says the party is yet to respond to their memorandum of grievances which they submitted two weeks ago.

Malaoane says the matter has impacted negatively on service delivery.

“On the 10th of June, we submitted our memorandum at Luthuli house. Since from that day to date we have not received any answer from the president. So we have decided that very soon we will go back and demand answers. We have been waiting for the president to give us answers about the issue of 16 councillors who have been expelled in our municipality. Very soon we will go and demand answers and up until we get answers we are not coming back,” says Malaoane.

Meanwhile in KwaZulu-Natal, a group of ANC youth league members are demanding the disbandment of the league’s provincial executive committee, saying its term of office has expired.

They marched to the ANC provincial offices in Durban. The marchers also accused both Youth League provincial Chairperson Kwazi Mshengu and provincial secretary, Thanduxolo Sabela of clinging to power.

Peter Matharika
Malawi court start Proceedings over alleged election irregularities
26 June 2019, 6:07 PM

Malawi’s constitutional court on Wednesday heard opening arguments in a case over alleged election irregularities as opposition parties battle to have the result of last month’s vote nullified.

The court did not allow public or media access to the hearing, which comes after the Malawi Congress Party (MCP) and the United Transformation Movement (UTM) lodged complaints of alleged fraud in the election.

President Peter Mutharika, leader of the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), held onto power in the May 21 vote, narrowly defeating Lazarus Chakwera of the MCP.

Briefing reporters outside court, MCP spokesman Eisenhower Mkaka said the court was deliberating on how the case would proceed.

Judges heard applications on media access, disclosure of financial documents and where ballot papers should be securely stored.

When the court met last week, police used tear gas to disperse opposition supporters gathered outside.

Security forces were deployed around the court on Wednesday, but there were no protests. Chakwera alleges he was the rightful winner of the election, which he lost by 159,000 votes.

After the result was announced, he described it as “daylight robbery.” Further protests are scheduled for next week.

Leona Kleynhans
DA blames FS Public Works for unpaid municipal accounts
26 June 2019, 5:47 PM

The Democratic Alliance (DA) has blamed the Free State Department of Public Works for its failure to pay municipal accounts for rates and taxes.

The party says the reason why some municipalities have collapsed can be attributed to the department constantly failing to settle their debts.

DA member of provincial legislature Leona Kleynhans says the situation has gotten worse for municipalities and it is feared that workers might not be paid their salaries.

“We saw, in this week, at least three municipalities are able to pay workers salaries. Of course now this is on top of the problem in the municipalities of revenue collection. They are unable to collect what people pay and of course this debt from the department of Public Works makes the situation even worse,” says Kleynhans.

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