AS the Highlanders elections draw close, the club’s board of directors has appointed six people to sit as the nomination court for the February 1 polls.
Board secretary Jimmy Ncube yesterday confirmed the nomination court was appointed at a meeting held at the club offices on Wednesday night.
“Yes, we met yesterday (Wednesday) for one of our regular meetings and with the upcoming elections and the nominations closing on Saturday (tomorrow), we appointed the nomination court which will be chaired by Luke Mnkandla,” he said.
“The court will sit on Saturday (tomorrow) morning to receive the nominations.”
Mnkandla will chair the court which will have highly respected High Court judge Justice Nicholas Mathonsi, labour expert Davies Ndumiso Sibanda, Elkanah Dube, former board chairman Dumisani Sandi and secretary Ncube.
“The other five will just be assisting the returning officer Mnkandla,” Ncube said.
The Highlanders board holds routine meetings every Wednesday in the second week of every month, according to the constitution.
Article 10,5 of the Highlanders’ constitution reads: “For purposes of any executive committee election, the board of trustees shall select a returning officer from among themselves and such a returning officer may be assisted by one or more board members.”
Up for grabs in the Highlanders elections are the post of executive chairman currently held by Peter Dube, who will be seeking re-election with strong challenge from former player, manager and chairman Ernest “Maphepha” Sibanda.
The secretary post held by outgoing executive committee member Andrew Tapela has attracted five names with former manager Emmett Ndlovu, Donald Ndebele, Innocent Batsani Ncube, Pilate Mahlangu and Njabulo Bango waiting to go through the nomination court for approval.
Tapela is constitutionally ineligible to seek re-election after serving two terms. Also up for grabs is the committee member post held by Charles “Six-One” Moyo who is seeking re-election.
Moyo is being challenged by life member Faith Silandulo Dube who yesterday confirmed he had picked up nomination papers.
Nomination papers are supposed to be signed by at least 10 bona fide members of the club and candidates pay a $100 nomination fee refundable on condition they get more than 10% of the vote.
There were only three candidates in 2012 for the post with Tapela garnering 153 votes and Ndlovu narrowly losing by eight votes while Ndebele got 55 votes.
Southern Eye Sport yesterday caught up with Mahlangu, an academic who has been a life member at Highlanders since 2007.
“I would say I am not very much known, but I have been very active at Highlanders having been in the supporters’ association (Bulawayo Chapter), but pulled out because there was too much politics,” he said.
“I have always been attending Highlanders annual general meetings and in November last year I was approached by members and friends.
“After wide consultations, I warmed up to the idea. People encouraged me and some criticised me. But I looked at what I could bring to Highlanders which is the whole idea: What do Ihave to further the Highlanders cause?”
Mahlangu, who has a marketing degree, is studying law with Unisa and working towards a PhD in African leadership with the National University of Science and Technology, said the Highlanders family has not perceived what a big brand it is and he would use his marketing skills to make Bosso members and supporters realise that.
“Building on the commendable work done by others before me, I would work to turn the supporters into members and build a strong community,” he said.
“I am not reinventing the wheel, but I could add vaule to what my predecessors have created. Using proven marketing concepts like customer relationship management, my target would be to double the almost 5 000 members within the three-year tenure. If not, I will have failed and I will not seek election in any executive post.”
He said he believed Bosso had to create internal sponsorship from its community of members and fans so as the attract admiration from outside sponsors.