Naude' Becker’s failure to inform the public on the progress of cases is what has created room for Sundowns’ conspiracy theories to gather momentum. Photo: Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix
In a press conference meant to clear the air and show that the Premier Soccer League’s disciplinary committee doesn’t have a vendetta against any team, the league’s prosecutor, Naudé Becker, came across as arrogant at worst, and aloof at best.

It was a rare moment from the PSL where they opened up to the media, showing the process of their disciplinary committee and why certain matters take a long time to be finalised. Becker revealed that he has a lot on his plate as an attorney as well as being the PSL’s prosecutor having to deal with matters from clubs in the Premier Division and National First Division.

“My job isn’t to simply get a piece of paper from the football department, a match report where they say I think that we have a problem, look at it and issue a charge,” Becker said. “I actually investigate these things because I am the one who has to argue these things. I am the one who has to get the witnesses and I’ve got to prove my case. In the past six years I have been unsuccessful in one matter where I issued a charge sheet on the matter.”

The matter that has Becker in the news relates to Mamelodi Sundowns fielding a defaulter in Wayne Arendse who wasn’t in the matchday 18 of the provisional squad that took on Bidvest Wits in Pretoria in October. Arendse was taken from the stands to the starting XI after Thapelo Morena was injured warming up. 

This contravenes the rules which is why Sundowns were hauled in front of the DC and found guilty. Issuing the verdict has taken some time due to Sundowns’ run in the CAF Champions League as they spend periods outside the country and have asked for numerous extensions due to their unavailability. Becker said he hasn't followed the Brazilians’ Champions League run which is why he set dates for their matters to be heard on days when they were away, resulting in sittings not happening.

Becker’s failure to inform the public on the progress of cases is what has created room for Sundowns’ conspiracy theories to gather momentum. Becker was adamant he will not change his stance on communicating, or lack thereof: “I have never considered it part of my mandate to liaise with or report to the press about specific matters. It is just not part of my job.”

PSL chairman Irvin Khoza hinted that they could now look into bringing in help for Becker.

Sunday Independent