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Lioli crisis deepens as Thotanyana resigns

Moorosi Tsiane

THE crisis at Lioli has just deepened after the club’s top leadership led by president Lebohang Thotanyana recently resigned from their posts, the Sunday Express has learnt.

Thotanyana, who has been at the helm of the team for a decade, has also served as the Premier League Management Committee (PLMC) from 2011 to 2015, was elected Lioli president since 2007.

His deputy, Hopolang Nathane and secretary general Sello Monamoli confirmed that they have also handed in their resignation letters.

This comes after a series of poor performances by Lioli in the league as before yesterday’s game against Galaxy, they had lost six out of 11 matches.

Among other teams which managed to collect maximum points in the first leg against Lioli are Kick4Life, Liphakoe, Majantja, Likhopo and Swallows.

Before yesterday, they had won four and drawn once.

Several attempts to get hold of Thotanyane proved fruitless as his phone rang unanswered until the time of going to print.

Lioli communications and marketing manager Motlatsi Mofokeng confirmed the resignations and said they are shocked by the news.

“We have such matters on our table and we were shocked to learn about the resignations.

“However, we are still trying to solve it as management and see where it gets us because we met with the three gentlemen on today (Friday) and they have gave us their reasons for wanting to leave but I can’t reveal what they have told us.

“What I can really tell you is that as a team, we have big problems that need our serious attention before things get out of hand,” Mofokeng said.

Nathane and Monamoli were also elected three years ago and their term was set to end in June next year.

Nathane confirmed to this publication on Thursday that he has indeed handed his in his letter to the committee but said he was still awaiting their response.

“Yes, I have written to the committee alerting them of my intent to leave the team but I am still awaiting their response,” Nathane said.

The developments also come at a time when the club is said to be broke after they took longer than expected to pay their players’ bonuses from the Independence Top4 trophy win in October.

Asked why he was leaving, Nathane was reluctant to commit only saying he had his personal reasons.

“I want to leave because of personal reasons which I don’t want to communicate now,” he said.

Nathane also said he has heard the rumors that Thotanyana has also submitted his letter but said he could not confirm.

He also refuted the perception that they are leaving because the team is struggling.

“I am not really sure whether or not he (Thotanyana) has resigned but I have also heard the rumors.

“Of course, people will start to talk and question things but my reasons for wanting to leave Lioli are personal,” he said.

Asked whether or not he will be returning to football administration, Nathane said he thinks he has done his part.

“Honestly, I don’t think I will ever return to football administration. I think I have done my part and that is just it,” Nathane said.

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