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  • Writer's pictureThathe Msimango

KZNA to introduce new rules as Bhekizizwe Joseph Shabalala Marathon struggles to pay athletes

KwaZulu-Natal Athletics (KZNA) say they will start clamping down on race organisers that stage events but fail to pay athletes timeously. This comes comes as top runners continue to demand payment from organisers of the Bhekizizwe Joseph Shabalala Marathon which took place on 11 February. Olympian Lebo Phalula won the women's 10km race in 33:45 earning a R10 000 prize purse, which she is yet to receive. Phalula's main concern is that other athletes have reportedly been paid while she is still waiting for her money.


"The funny part is that most of the athletes have already obtained their winnings whereas I'm not even though I won the race. I have been in touch with the organizers who have been promising to pay me but nothing," she told #TheTopRunner. "The guy I spoke to said they are not certain when to pay me as they are waiting for the funds from overseas to clear to the bank. This is confusing because at first he said he is waiting for provincial government to pay him then would settle us. I don't know what to believe anymore."


KZNA Deputy President Mandla Mngomezulu says they are in the process of introducing new rules that will guide race organisers on a number of issues including the payment of athletes. Photo Credit: Supplied.

The race which was organized to honor the late celebrated Grammy award winner Joseph Shabalala, who is the founder of the Isichathamiya group Ladysmith Black Mambazo was staged by Luvuyo Shabalala. Shabalala is pleading for patience saying administrative issues to do with their bank account is what has led to the delays in paying athletes.


"It is true that there are certain athletes that are yet to get paid and we are hoping to get their payments by the end of this week. Before, we had issues with our bank which caused a huge delay to process the funds but it sorted now. Plus another issue, we receive funds from overseas which take time to clear on the bank. I promise that all athletes will be paid soon," he explained.


Lebo Phalula is concerned that she is yet to receive her winnings from organisers of the Bhekizizwe Joseph Shabalala Marathon while other athletes have been paid. Photo Credit: MWMedia.

KZNA Deputy President Mandla Mngomezulu says this is not on adding that they have received a number of complaints about certain race organisers who abscond with athletes' monies. Mngomezulu says they are in the process of introducing new rules to rid the sport of this unwanted behaviour.


"It not the first time someone made an enquiry about this. We are familiar with the athletes who has encountered problems with getting their money in that race. I understand others receive their money last week. We are in discussions to implement new rules in which athletes will no longer face situations like this. Once that is finalized we will notify the athletics community. These are things we don't need into sport,"



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