(Photo by Lefty Shivambu/Gallo Images)
- Moroka Swallows have been fined R1 million for missing matches due to a players’ strike over unpaid salaries.
- The club pleaded guilty and avoided suspension with R600,000 of the fine being suspended for 24 months, contingent on good behavior.
- Meanwhile, their relevant opponents – Mamelodi Sundowns and Golden Arrows – received walkover victories with three points and three goals each.
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Moroka Swallows have forfeited six log points and slapped with a hefty fine of R1 million for their failure to participate in DStv Premiership matches against Mamelodi Sundowns and Golden Arrows in December.
Swallows informed the PSL that they couldn’t fulfill the matches because of players striking over unpaid salaries.
Subsequently, last week, PSL prosecutor Zola Majavu charged the Dube Birds with misconduct and bringing the league into disrepute.
On Thursday, a final decision was reached after Swallows appeared before the PSL disciplinary committee (DC).
Swallows, who pleaded guilty and expressed remorse, avoided suspension or expulsion from the league, Majavu confirmed.
Out of the R1 million fine, R600,000 is suspended for 24 months, contingent on the condition that Swallows are not found guilty of the same offense during the suspension period.
“I can confirm that Moroka Swallows appeared before the PSL DC to answer to charges of misconduct on account of their non-fulfillment of the fixtures which were scheduled for the December 27 and 30 against Mamelodi Sundowns and Lamontville Golden Arrows respectively,” said Majavu.
“After the charges were put to them, they pleaded guilty. The league accepted the plea and as a result they were convicted accordingly.
“With regards to sanctions, having listened to the submissions from the two legal representatives on behalf of the league and as well as Moroka Swallows, the DC returned the following ruling:
“In respect of each match that was not honoured, the opponents of Moroka Swallows were awarded that match on the basis of three points and three goals. This is what is referred to as a walkover.
“They were further fined R1m, of which R600,000 is suspended for 24 months on condition that during the period of suspension they are not found guilty of the same offence.”
Majavu stated that Swallows escaped more severe penalties such because they demonstrated regret, considering the saga a learning experience while implemented measures to prevent a recurrence of similar incidents.
“The balance of R400,000 is to be paid and they were further ordered to carry the costs of the hearing, which will be added to the R400,000.
“As an aside, the DC further cautioned Moroka Swallows about the perilous route and fate that may befall them should they re-offend in that one of the competent sanctions could easily have been suspension from the league or a total expulsion.
“However, the DC recognised that they pleaded guilty at the first available opportunity and that was accepted as indicative of remorse.
“The DC further accepted that they have learnt a lesson and have put measures in place to ensure that a repeat of this unfortunate incident, that could potentially damage the brand of the league, is not repeated.”