Simba SC Chief Executive Officer Barbara Gonzalez has announced that the club will file a formal complaint against Orlando Pirates assistant coach Mandla Ncikazi.
In a statement published on Tuesday, Gonzalez said:
“Simba Sports Club is deeply disappointed with the defamatory remarks made by the Orlando Pirates co-coach Mandla Ncikazi after their CAFCC quarterfinal defeat against us on Sunday, 17th April 2022.
“We vehemently condemn the unprofessionalism and unethical behavior exhibited by Coach Ncikazi through his remarks.
“As the host team, we will never tolerate any slander of that kind to our Country and to our Club.
“As Tanzanian’s we pride ourselves on providing a safe and secure environment for all activities, and ensure a high stand of service is provided to all our guests.
“As their opponents, we were deeply puzzled by the strange behavior of Orlando Pirates since their arrival into Tanzania.
“All gestures that were friendly accorded to them were openly denied, starting with the vehicles provided for their logistics in Tanzania, and the suggested hotels in close proximity to the stadium so as to accord them with a comfortable and friendly environment ahead of the match.
“In addition to the above, Orlando Pirates arrived over an hour late to the official training session set by CAF, yet stadium officials were kind to accommodate them, despite their deliberate choice to stay a far distance from the stadium (out of town).
“Most strangely, the peculiar decision to use an unofficial entry into the stadium dressing rooms via the media room.
“This is not how mega-clubs conduct themselves, and for that, they must accept all responsibility for their own actions that resulted in the poor choices they made since their arrival into Tanzania despite receiving a prior friendly advice from Simba.
“South Africa and Tanzania have deep historical ties that perhaps Coach Ncikazi was unaware of.
“One of the first external missions of the ANC during the apartheid struggle was in Morogoro, Tanzania.
“The disturbingly insensitive remarks made by the Coach erode the brotherhood of our two countries by deliberately defaming Simba and the entire nation, knowing we went beyond the statutory duties to accord his team friendly environment ahead of the match.
“Mean-spirited comments from Coach Ncikazi are highly detrimental to the progress of African football as we know it. Playing by the written rules is mandatory, however respecting the unwritten ones is a must.
“Fair play requires unconditional respect for opponents, and fellow players. This is something Coach Ncikazi failed to accord us with.
“As seasoned football administrators, we understand the tactics of modern day football pre and post-performance propaganda (mind games) on the outcome of the match.
“The intention to garner sympathy from football stakeholders as a buffer for poor results is distasteful, however what coach Ncikazi did was beyond crossing a very dangerous line.
“Everyone has the right to have their dignity respected and protected, but what Coach Ncikazi did was a clear infringement of this by sharing baseless remarks with the intention to tarnish the good image of Simba and Tanzania.
“As a result of false and defamatory allegations made by Coach Ncikazi, Simba will file a formal complaint to CAF and through the diplomatic channels to address the severity of what was alluded to.
“As we prepare for our CAFCC 2nd leg quarterfinal match in South Africa on the 24th of April 2022, we humbly ask the Government of Tanzania and the Government of South Africa to accord us all the necessary security ahead of our travel.
“The in-direct threats to our safety and security are not to be dismissed, and should anything happen to Simba during our stay, we will understand the route of any incident.
“Football is all about mutual respect, and us Simba we have zero tolerance policy for disrespect of any kind.
“Must learn to be mindful of our words, and the lasting consequences they have on our communities.
“Let this be a teachable moment never to cross these lines again.”