Chiefs boss Motaung set to get away with breaking lockdown rules
Football manager pictured in video partying at a house and ignoring social distancing and not wearing a mask
Kaizer Chiefs football manager Bobby Motaung is likely to escape censure for allegedly flouting lockdown regulations after it emerged that a case had not been opened against him with the police.
Videos of the Chiefs boss partying at a house with a group of people are circulating on social media, surfacing at a time when visiting family and social gatherings are prohibited by government’s lockdown rules.
A Gauteng police spokesperson, Captain Mavela Masondo, said they could not investigate as a case had not been opened. They also did not know when and where the incident happened.
Motaung could not be reached for comment on Tuesday as his mobile phone was off. The Premier Soccer League (PSL) and the SA Football Association (Safa) declined to comment.
Chiefs spokesperson Vina Maphosa said they were looking into the matter.
“The club is clear on issues of Covid-19 and assisting with curbing the spread of infections‚” Maphosa said. “And if any of the club members engage in activities that seek to undermine these attempts‚ [they] will be investigated and dealt with accordingly.
“If we find anything and that warrants informing the public‚ we are duty-bound to do so. For now our focus is on returning to football action and such matters will be taken care of internally via relevant platforms.”
Deputy sports minister Nocawe Mafu said it was a matter for law enforcement to pursue.
“That is an issue of law enforcement because we don’t deal with policing people. The law must take its course on whoever has broken the law. It doesn’t matter whether it’s Bobby [Motaung] or deputy minister Mafu‚” said the deputy minister.
President Cyril Ramaphosa has been pleading with people to behave responsibly and not gather unnecessarily‚ to wear masks and observe social distancing when in groups.
Football is set to resume in SA soon, and the clubs are expected to observe strict protocols to ensure there are no coronavirus-related cases in the PSL’s “bio-bubble”, an area meant to be strictly controlled and monitored for Covid-19 infections.
Chiefs and several other clubs have reported cases of Covid-19 in their ranks in recent weeks and a video of a senior official partying with a group of people makes a mockery of sports minister Nathi Mthethwa’s promise to crack down on those who fail to observe safety protocols.
Mthethwa warned on Monday that he would not hesitate to stop the PSL season if the clubs fail to follow the approved Covid-19 health and safety protocols.
“It therefore means those plans they have submitted should be adhered to. It’s not a fait accompli that people will just get on the field and play‚” he said.
“They will play based on the plans which were submitted to the department, and we reserve the right to halt any activity if we feel and think that those protocols and plans are not adhered to.”
But that warning sounds empty as it seems Motaung will get away without even being reprimanded.
Motaung is seen in one of the videos interacting with a group of friends and while one of the people in the room appears to have a mask on his chin‚ there is no regard for social distancing.
In the first video‚ two women are seen smoking with a hubbly bubbly, a type of pipe that uses water to cool the smoke, while flouting social-distancing rules.
The second video shows Motaung with a group of friends, all not wearing masks or social-distancing.
PSL clubs and those in the National First Division are expected to enter the “bio-bubble” this week to complete the season. It remains to be seen if Motaung will be among the Chiefs officials checking into the hotel reserved for them.
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