Shipanga’s future at BA uncertain
By Michael Uugwanga
PAULUS ‘Wire’ Shipanga says he has no idea whether he will be coaching Black Africa in the forthcoming season, following Ranga Haikali’s decision to hand over Black Africa to the community last week after bankrolling the club for 10 years, this saw BA win five league titles with Haikali’s support.
Since buying BA in 2010, the club went on to win four successive Namibia Premier League (NPL) championships in 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014 under Brian Isaacs.
Shipanga was appointed coach last season and guided the club to its 11th NPL title, with the club also having previously won the title in 1987,1989,1995,1998 and 2019.
It is not only Shipanga’s future at the club that is shrouded in uncertainty but also that of the NPL, because of the ongoing dispute between the Namibia Football Association (NFA) and the NPL.
This is in relation to the relegations and promotions of last season,specifically Orlando Pirates and Civics, who were relegated to the first division after Pirates in 15th place and Civics in 14th place were declared by the NPL as no longer NPL teams.
However, the NFA directed the NPL that there no teams would be relegated because of the absence of the first division last season.
Speaking to Confidente Sport this week, the former Blue Waters, Bay United(South Africa) and Brave Warriors winger said he does not know where he stands with the club.
The new interim executive members of BA are Cassius Moetie (chairperson), Mutrifa (deputy chairperson), while other executive members are Scara Khaiseb, Lakka Goagoseb, Doris Lamperth and Boni Paulino.
In a press statement issued by Moetie last week, he urged the new executive members to ensure that the club finds a new substantive financial stream, and remains competitive.
“I do not know where I stand as coach of Black Africa. I last spoke with Browny[Mutrifa, deputy chairperson of BA] before the whole saga of the NPL and NFA started some few months ago. When I was appointed by Haikali he told me the mandate as I used to speak to him directly,” said Shipanga.
Last week, Confidente reported that BA captain Dynamo Fredericks was out of contract, as well as the players that won the league title last season, thus Shipanga said even if he was to be retained in his position by the new executive, it will be very difficult for him to re-assemble a squad capable of retaining the NPL in case the league starts this month, as pronounced by the NPL chairman Patrick Kauta.
BA has not yet started with training due to uncertainty over the start of the league, while rival African Stars, who finished second last season and have won the league title on four occasions have been actively training.
Shipanga will need to win over the hearts of the new executive members, in particular Moetie, who resigned as club board member last year after the appointment of Shipanga by Haikali.
“I am very much concerned about re-building a squad because it will take me three, four, five to six weeks to build a squad. Maybe only two players still have contracts with the club. Maybe the players who are out of contracts are busy talking to other clubs, but if they remain with the club it will good,” he said.
Asked to comment on whether Shipanga is still coach, Moetie told Confidente Sport that the interim committee will have a meeting before the end of the year, where a decision will be made on the technical team and the way forward for the club.
It is understood that the club will have to review the contract of Shipanga and the rest of the technical team.“We all know that there is no soccer season. We are going to have a meeting before the end of the year about new changes and the way forward for the club. After the meeting is when we are going to call for a meeting with all our supporters countrywide to inform them about the technical team, not only for football but for netball as well,” Moetie said.