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  • Writer's pictureCharles Baloyi

Mathane to run for third term at AGN elections in March

Athletics Gauteng North (AGN) president John Mathane will run for a third term in office. The veteran administrator had two successful terms and wants to lead the regional athletics federation for a final stint. The eagerly awaited elections will take place on 20 March at a venue still to be confirmed, in Tshwane. AGN amended its constitution last year, and Mathane is eligible to go for a third term if he gets elected into the new board. He claims that big-name athletes such as Caster Semenya and Stephen Mokoka want him to continue leading them.

AGN President John Mathane is ready to serve a third term as the federation's president. Photo Credit: John Mathane.

"Yes, I am standing for a third term. But it will depend on the people's votes as to whether I will remain president or not. But I have the backing of clubs and top athletes. Caster and Mokoka phoned me and pledged their support and want me to continue as president. I am available, and if the people want me to lead them, I will do so as requested. I've received numerous requests from people saying they want me back. Who am I to say no when they people want me to lead them," said the soft-spoken Mathane.

Caster Semenya leads the pack running in the colours of AGN at the 2018 Sizwe Medical Fund 360 Life SA Senior Track & Field Championships. Photo Credit: Athletics South Africa.

Judging by his popularity, Mathane could run for president unopposed. The nominations and recommendations for office bearers are open until 8 March. AGN used to hold their elections every two years, but starting this year the board's term has now changed to four years. There are eleven places up for grabs on the AGN board. About 209 members will gather under the same roof to elect the new board. Mathane said they would comply with the Covid-19 regulations during the elections.

"We will hold our Annual General Meeting (AGM) on 20 March. There will be 209 members, and at the end of our discussion, they will elect a new board. We will comply with the regulations and maintain social distancing," explained Mathane. As the election day draws nearer the federation is finalising its logistics plan and looking for a venue that can safely accommodate 250 people.

Mathane (second from left) poses for a photo with the great Justin Gatlin (centre) & ASA President Aleck Skhosana (shaking hands with Gatlin) ahead of the 2018 Liquid Telecom Athletix Grand Prix Series Meet which took place at the Tuks Stadium in Pretoria. Photo Credit: Mosibodi Whitehead Media.

The regional federation based in the nation's capital are known for hosting top athletics events. In April, AGN will host the SA senior track and field championships at the refurbished Pilditch Stadium. AGN worked with the city of Tshwane municipality to do a multi-million Rand refurbishment of the stadium. "Every province wants a piece of us at AGN. We receive numerous requests to host meetings here. I do not mean to blow my own trumpet, but my track record speaks for itself. We have a refurbished stadium and have world-class athletes," said Mathane.

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