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Chiefs battle identity crisis

Sporting gloves are almost coming off as Mochudi Centre Chiefs house battles an intense transformation crisis. The club that is perched at the summit of the be-MOBILE premier league is standing on the brink of collapse as internal bickering takes centre stage.


Information Weekend Sport is in possession of paints a picture of a life of a club rumbling thorough different phases as it seeks to protect its shining image.


Two companies registered under the umbrella club are engaged in lengthy discussions and talks to find a common understanding.


In 1999, the club registered a company by the name Mochudi Centre Chiefs limited but surprisingly in 2014, the same club registered another company, Mochudi Centre Chiefs PTY Limited.  


According to documentation seen by this publication, the discussions regarding the ‘true’ ownership of the club should have ended on the 9th of March as companies and registration authority threatened to dissolve the new company registered last year as Mochudi Centre Chiefs(PTY) limited.


The directors of the ‘new’ company however mention that they are willing to continue engaging the old ones despite the deadline of the companies and registration authority having lapsed. They have submitted that even though directors of the old company are dragging their feet to alleviate the matter, legally there is room for co-existence.


To further show their intent, the directors of the new company through their attorneys have responded to the registrar asking for extension as the matter is drags to the end.  “Consequently, the discussions are at an early stage, regrettably towards the end of the 60 days period. The purpose of this letter is to request your esteemed office to extend the period at least by 30 days to enable parties to settle the matter. In our opinion, taking all the circumstances in to consideration, we find it appropriate that an extension beyond the 60 days period will be appropriated,” reads part of the letter.


It is noted that the old company is not under immense pressure to come to the negotiating table and had on the 3rd of March requested the new one to remonstrate the entity the company claims to represent, the business of the entity and lastly draw a proposal for them to see if it could be accepted.


CHIEFS DEVELOPMENT ROUTE
Research suggests that Mochudi Centre Chiefs sporting club was first registered in July of 1974. The club was registered as a society under the societies Act of Botswana as a football team. It is noted that the club participated in the upper league of BFA under the terms prescribed in the constitution of the association together with the confinement of the societies act.


Information shows that there had been numerous attempts overtime to transform the club with a view to make it more commercially sustainable and to uplift its football performances. However, such attempts threw the club into some disgruntlements, sabotage and sporadic achievements coupled with factionalism.


Between 1999 and 2003, the club proposed to form an entity known as Mochudi Centre Chiefs Limited (MCCL). The entity was formed by a team of 13 adults who at the time convinced the general membership of the high level transformational elements that needed to be implored to make the club commercially sustainable. The general membership is said to have granted the entity portfolio responsibility to administer its affairs, commercial rights together with trading names. The club was therefore performing politically and financially under this entity until 2003.


However, things took a dramatic twist when the entity called a general meeting in April of 2003. Of the 13 founding members, at least four members declared themselves incapacitated to continue with the administration aspects of the club. With that, the members handed back all the properties of the club including brand name, logo and commercial rights. Amicably, the club accepted, according to information gathered by WeekendSport.


To act towards the sudden decision by the entity, the club opted for an interim committee with a view to determining whether to continue with MCCL under different directors. However, in October 2004, the general membership made a resolution to not continue with MCCL so as to leave the entity defunct while the club continued as it were at inception.


In June 2010, after the club resolved that there was need for transformation, a task force was appointed. The task force was mandated to look into the possible ways in which the club could be transformed including models suitable for the traditional makeup.


Then in 2011, the taskforce recommended that the club be privatised. A resolution was made for everyone to scout for investors to partner with the club. At that time a resolution was also adopted that a trust be formed given the difficulties encountered in transforming the society club to a private entity.


It came to pass that in 2013, the club partnered with the Jamali family following lengthy discussions. Jamali was given a 60% share of the club while inviting other members for equity participation within two years. This later saw another decision being made to dissolve the existence of the club as a society and transform it into a trust. Records show that the Mochudi Centre Chiefs trust was formed under the Notarial Trust deed on 26th February 2014.


On the same year of 2014, another entity Ribbons Investment (PTY) Ltd emerged as a result of its partnership with the trust. Based on the operating costs, Jamali Family owns 60%, Maclean Letshwiti 20%, Ernest Molome 20 % while the trust has the remaining 10%.


In May 2014, after Ribbons investment assumed all affairs of the club, another entity by the name Mochudi Centre Chiefs (PTY) Ltd was formed. The same entity that has now set the fire burning inside chief’s house was formed following a decision to change the affiliation status of the club at BFA.


According to laws of the country, the former risks being dissolved unless a common understanding is reached.

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