The Motsepe Foundation has intervened in the ongoing dispute between the South Africa women’s national team (Banyana Banyana) and the South African Football Association (SAFA) by announcing it will contribute 6 million Rand ($319,287) to the members of Banyana Banyana for the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup.
SAFA continues to come under increasing criticism for not providing additional bonuses to Banyana Banyana for their upcoming participation at the tournament in New Zealand and Australia. The players are set to receive compensation from FIFA but demanded additional compensation from SAFA for their efforts. Former SAFA vice president Ria Ledwaba, who ran as a candidate against longtime SAFA president Danny Jordaan in the last election, praised The Motsepe Foundation for their action but acknowledged it was a bailout for SAFA and Jordaan:
“The first thing we need to do is applaud the stand the players took. It was a brave stance they took to say they are not going to settle for less than what they deserve… It’s important that Danny Jordaan stands up and apologises without mentioning other countries like England. SAFA has to stand up and take responsibility for what has happened. We can’t be thanking the Motsepe Foundation all the time and deflecting from the real issues.”
The situation has been a disaster of negative publicity for SAFA who were forced to gather an improvised selection for Banyana Banyana’s send off friendly against Botswana, a match that ended in a humiliating 5-0 defeat for South Africa. The dispute appears to be cooling off but there will have to be many steps taken to repair the relationship between the reigning African women’s champions and South Africa’s footballing body.