Former Fifa international referee and businessman Andile “Ace” Ncobo has withdrawn from the upcoming SA Football (Safa) presidential elections.
This follows an intervention from a Fifa delegation, led by Cosafa president Phillip Chiyangwa. The Cosafa boss held marathon meetings with Safa, then with presidential nominee Ncobo, on Wednesday. The parties finally resolved the impasse at 1:30am.
Fifa sent a delegation to resolve the dispute after Ncobo had challenged the validity of the elections as well as Danny Jordaan’s eligibility to stand for re-election.
Cosafa president Chiyangwa was then dispatched to go and resolve the matter. He then announced at a press conference in Johannesburg on Thursday morning that he had successfully brokered an agreement “between the two parties contesting the upcoming South African Football Association (Safa) elections after being sent to Johannesburg by Fifa to mediate in the dispute.”
Chiyangwa was mandated by world football’s governing body to seek clarity on the situation around the Safa presidential elections, which had been scheduled for March 24, and mediate in a dispute between the two candidates, incumbent Jordaan and Ncobo.
Chiyangwa was also asked to look at the dispute over Safa statutes that were at the forefront of the conflict, and the subject of a threatened court challenge.
Both tasks were achieved successfully after marathon talks into the late hours on Wednesday.
“Safa will elect an electoral committee before the elections can take place,” said the Cosafa president at a press conference in Johannesburg on Thursday.
The congress is scheduled for Johannesburg on March 24, so the formation of the committee will have to be done in the next days.
Ace Ncobo Press Statement on Fifa Intervention pic.twitter.com/OB8tTbiul7
— Ace Ncobo (@AceNcobo) March 15, 2018
Chiyangwa used his powers of persuasion in a meeting with the candidates to ensure an amicable solution.
“Danny Jordaan and Ace Ncobo are both celebrated in SA football. I had a meeting with Safa and it has led to this scenario. There is an agreement that has been signed by both parties.
“It brings closure to the dispute that had arisen. This was the first time I met Ace. He is a good guy who made it clear he is not interested in the presidency. I don’t want there to be fighting in any associations. My job here was to resolve any fights, that’s my mandate,” he said.