The South African Football Association (SAFA) have released a statement to clarify the issue surrounding the non-payment of bonuses to Banyana Banyana’s backroom staff ahead of the 2023 FIFA Women’s World in Australia and New Zealand.
South African Football Association Statement:
The South African Football Association (SAFA) has noted reports doing the rounds and wishes to state categorically that we were never part of any discussions that agreed for R115 000 to be paid to the Banyana Banyana support staff. We were shocked and surprised when this announcement was made by the SAFPU President at the press conference held on 4 July 2023 in Sandton.
The fact is nowhere in the world does a staff member of a team get paid an appearance fee at the World Cup, the Olympic Games or any other international competition for that matter. Even SASCOC does not do that.
Support staff will be paid daily fees as per the assignment contracts they signed, however, in this instance, the Association has also offered daily allowances, plus a share of any donations received over and above the daily fees. Bonuses are based on performance, not by simply being at the tournament.
This decision is strictly based on policy and principle as far as the support staff is concerned. The staff members are separate from the players with most of the staff in the camp having jobs elsewhere; one being a SAFA employee with a monthly salary before the camp remuneration. The players are different as most do not have full-time jobs and do not get paid for playing football on a monthly basis.
We wish to state it clearly that SAFA has never promised any staff R115 000 per official prior to SAFPU’s unilateral announcement. We have said that any money that is raised will be distributed to the staff. So far only R6-million has been raised for the players, thanks to the Motsepe Foundation and iThuba.
We have committed to every single cent that was raised for the players, including the FIFA prize monies that were put on the table. As far as the staff is concerned, we committed to their assignment contracts to pay their daily fees as per the contract signed and daily allowances, over and above the fees. Any bonuses that will be given to the staff will be based on the team’s progression at the FIFA Women’s World Cup because bonuses are performance incentives.
The administration’s position is clear that we do not give bonuses for staff appearances at the FIFA Women’s World Cup or any other international tournament. That model is not sustainable. We need to reiterate that FIFA is clear that the additional money they have committed to the PMAs should be used for national team’s costs (inclusive of technical staff fees and allowances) and also for women’s football development. As an Association, we have an obligation to ensure that we develop younger players who are future Banyana Banyana stars to maintain the team’s successes at the recent Women’s AFCON in the future.
We are of the view that these funds should not to be going to individuals’ pockets as appearance fees. We have the women’s Under-17 and the women’s Under-20 FIFA Women’s World Cup qualifiers coming up and both our U17 and U20 national teams do not have sponsors. As an Association, we have an obligation to ensure that those teams are adequately prepared for the qualifiers immediately after the FIFA Women’s World Cup. We should not forget that while Banyana Banyana needs sufficient support, we need to invest in our junior national teams as well for succession planning.
Following the unfortunate media leaks and disruption in the camp, the Association will have internal discussions around this matter and will revert to the staff accordingly.