Business tycoon and once Gaborone United devoted financier, Nicholas Zackhem has started to withdraw his resources from Gilport Lions. He has decided not ditch Gaborone United for Gilport Lions as initially planned.
This week, he confirmed his return with a hefty P1 million cheque to the Reds. At the launch hosted at the construction magnate’ s exquisite chez Nicholas, it was revealed that the P1 million will be used to meet this season’s club needs, especially players’ welfare. GU players have not enjoyed month ends since the departure of the Lebanese investor.
In addition to Zackhem, another private company, Mobicel, would not be outdone, it put forward P1 million towards the team for the 2016/17 season. The company has been given the front space on the team shirts to gain mileage, while the back-neck strip is for Zac construction despite the two pledging the same amount.
“We should tame these companies especially Zac. We don’t want politics to spoil our game. We need a big bus; and its people like him who can help us. You the antagonist who are going to the courts will eat humble pie because Zac is here to stay,” former GU administrator, Patrick Masimolole told the supporters. He continued to address the players, “this gestures talk to you as the players, you ought to give your best, so investors can come to help the team.”
Zackhem leaves Gilport wailing
While his return to GU is a celebrated affair, Zackhem leaves the Gaborone based Gilport Lions heartbroken, this essentially means the team will be under the owner, Kelisitse Gilika’s sole care. Before the season kick off, Gilika confirmed that Zac had purchased shares at Gilport Enterprise, this publication later learnt that he acquired a majority stake of 90%. This has been reversed now as the investor returned to the team he has been with since joining football as a financier.
The reason why he came back to the Reds, according to observers is the uncertainty surrounding Gilport Lions. This is a result of a sudden emergence of court case which questions the ownership of Gilport Lions. The businessman is reportedly not pleased by the scenery especially because the project (Gilport) does not appear bankable.
Other reports suggest that Gilika, a bonafide GU supporter may trace his footsteps back to the team should he loose the battle against the spirited Sonny Phiri faction who are questioning how their team, (formerly BMC FC) was sold to investors under unclear circumstances.
Zackhem will however be regarded as a sponsor at GU unlike in the past when he was a majority shareholder (51%) at Soccer Dynamics- a company tasked with running the affairs of the club. GU has not been doing well of late; this past Monday they lost 3-1 to BDF XI in the Mascom top 8 tournament. In the BTC Premiership, they have only registered one win and a loss while playing draws in other games.
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For the first time after eons, football clubs plying their trade in the elite league are walking in the shadow of the undefined with nothing concrete agreed and on sight before the commencement of the football season.