Fight for Black Africa’s soul …Factions square off in court

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Fight for Black Africa’s soul …Factions square off in court

Maria Sheya

Marco Ndlovu


The leadership dispute between two factions of Black Africa Sports Club (BASC) has spilled over to the courts as they fight for the reigns of one of the oldest and most successful sports clubs in the country.

The dispute is over the newly adopted constitution and the leadership elected after that. The new constitution was adopted on 8 July 2023. 

Consequently, the board of directors was elected with Boni Paulino as the chairperson, deputised by Rebekka Goagoses. Rino Muranda, Michael Jimmy, Doris Doreen Lamperdt, Scarra Khaiseb, and Browny Mutrifa are ordinary members of the board.

In an urgent application filed in December last year on behalf of the club by Okeri Mbingeneeko, who is the chairperson of the club’s executive committee, the Paulino-led faction seeks a court interdict against members of the executive committee of the other faction, which was elected in line with the old constitution. 

That other group comprises Thomas Adams, Sylvester Titus, Dralli Titus, Willie Anton van Wyk, and Helmuth Hochobeb.

Other respondents include BA’s team manager, Sakaria Mulumba, and a handful of players.

Mbingeneeko, on behalf of the club, wants the court to interdict Adams and his team from interfering in the affairs of the club, using the assets, name, logo, and brand.

They further want the court to order the group to hand over the club’s properties.

‘Rehoboth Black Africa’

In their application, Mbingeneeko and his team said the fracas started at the time when the Namibia Premier League (NPL) was expelled by the Namibia Football Association (NFA) in 2020, which then replaced the expelled NPL with the Namibia Premier Football League (NPFL).

The NFA then extended an invitation to all football clubs to join the new NPFL, a move that was resisted by many, including BA’s executive committee.

“Some supporters of BA then had a closed-door meeting in Rehoboth, adopted a new constitution under the name and style of ‘BASC’, and elected some of them and others to the club’s executive committee,” said Mbingeneeko in court documents.

Those elected were the late Lucky Richter, Dimbulukeni Nauyoma, Jimmy Julie, Thomas Adams, Albert Makabanyane, Jason Gurirab, Dralli Titus, and Ingrid Louis.

He said the group, widely referred to as ‘Rehoboth Black Africa’, then joined the NPFL and played in that league for the 2022/2023 season, where the team performed badly and was relegated. Due to that poor performance, the executive committee of the ‘Rehoboth BA’ approached the executive committee of BA to rescue the football team.

They (Rehoboth BA) delegated Jason Gurirab to meet with Paulino, who was appointed by the executive committee of BA, to come up with a plan to rescue, revive, and unify the club.

“BA authorised the establishment of an ad hoc committee called the Transitional Committee, on which BA nominated three members: Michael Jimmy, Melitha Kgobetsi-Mathe, and Jenny Cupido,” he said.

He went on to say that the ‘Rehoboth BA’ went on to nominate Scara Khaiseb, Rino Muranda, and Elizabeth Kamutuezu. Cupido later resigned.

“By its mandate, the Transitional Committee then drafted a new constitution for BA. The constitution was presented to a general meeting of members of BA on 17 June 2023 and adopted on 8 July 2023, resulting in the election of board members,” said Mbingeneeko.

Consequently, the board of directors appointed the executive committee to oversee the day-to-day operations of BA.

Yesterday, their lawyer, Norman Tjombe, argued before Windhoek High Court Judge Herman Oosthuizen that the adoption of the new constitution and the election of the board of directors resulted in the lapsing or termination of the old executive committee of BA and the executive committee of the ‘Rehoboth BA’.

He said the new constitution was adopted because of the existence of the factions that harmed the progress of Black Africa and achieved harmony and progress.

“It is submitted that the ultimate purpose of the adoption of a new constitution and the election of a new leadership in the form of a board of directors was to arrest the misfortunes of BA caused by ‘the Rehoboth faction’ by doing away with the various factions of the organisation and establish a home for everyone under one constitution,” said Tjombe.


Responding to the suit, Adams and his team are claiming that Mbingeneeko and his group do not have the legal right to institute the suit on behalf of BA.

They further claim that Mbingeneeko is not the club’s chairperson, nor is he a member of any executive committee. Thus, he has no authority.

Furthermore, the constitution adopted on 8 July 2023 is not valid.

They went on to say that the valid constitution of BA ‘adopted on 7 November 2020 which remains in force, was and still is recognised by the NFA, NPFL and the SSFD’.

They went on to say that at no point did the club have two executive committees. They further say that the executive committee instructed Gurirab to approach Paulino ‘to discuss and forge ideas on how to revitalise the applicant (BA) due to disunity and division within the applicant (BA)’.

Furthermore, the Transitional Committee was to review the constitution of BASC and ensure its approval at the annual general meeting.

Who are the rightful leaders?, the group said the SSFD executive committee held a meeting on 20 November 2023 and concluded that the meeting of 8 July 2023 was not convened in terms of BA’s constitution – a decision that Mbingeneeko and others have appealed to the NFA.

Their lawyer, Logino Goraseb, reiterated that Mbingeneeko lacks the legal standing to represent BA. He said Mbingeneeko unlawfully filed the application, and thus the court must dismiss it. “The deponent (Mbingeneeko and others) cannot come to this court to seek enforcement of rights and privileges obtained in an unlawful and underhand manner,” argued Goraseb.

Thus, the court must instead interdict and restrain Mbingeneeko and his team from interfering with the affairs of BA, using its assets, name, logo, and brand.

The court must also order them to hand over the club’s bank accounts, equipment, and playing gear. In addition, Mbingeneeko and Paulino must bear the cost of the suit jointly and severally.

Judge Oosthuizen will deliver the ruling in the matter on 29 February.

No deterrence

Thomas Adams, a leader of one of the factions fighting for control of BASC, says the solutions to the current problems faced by the club lie within the club, not the courts.

He was speaking to New Era Sport yesterday outside the High Court following a court hearing.

Adams said it was weak and a waste of time to take football matters to the courts. “On 29 February, the rightful people will be given the mandate to run the club by the country’s legal instruments,” he said.

He added that the financial resources spent on court cases could be used to better run the club.

“We will engage the Southern Stream First Division (SSFD) and report to them what transpired at the High Court and take it from there,” Adams said. Meanwhile, the spokesperson of the faction led by Paulino, Muranda said they will not be making any comments until the court has pronounced itself on 29 February.