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An open letter to former AFBC President Bertrand Mendouga

Hello monsieur Bertrand Mendouga. It’s my hope you’re doing well in Yaounde, Cameroon’s capital city.

I’m reminding you once again the 29 boxers from Zambia, Algeria and Mozambique are still waiting to be paid their outstanding prize money totalling $162,500 they won in the Africa Championships last year in Maputo.

Since you’ve gone public admitting you spent that huge amount for a one-day function, it’s only you who knows how they’ll be paid because you didn’t involve AFBC Board of Directors and the International Boxing Association. In a capsule summary there was no written agreement as to how that money will be reimbursed.

To me that’s disrespect to the boxers yet these are grown ups and therefore deserve all the respect especially taking into account the risks they undergo in the ring.

In your letter detailing your questionable expenditure, you said you used the boxers prize money for the launch of AFBC headquarters and then you reimburse them with the IBA $500,000 remittance by President Umar Kremlev.

Photo: From left to right Sam Njau, Nick Okoth, Boniface Mogunde and Liz Andiego

You’re well aware that IBA currently does not receive anything from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) for obvious reasons I don’t need to elaborate here.

Therefore there was no guarantee Kremlev would remit $500,000 as pledged, and he is not under any obligation to send the money.

The big mistake you made is withdrawing the boxers prize money without involving anybody. You didn’t even have the courtesy to inform AFBC Board of Directors and IBA.

Or even seeking the permission of the 29 boxers because that’s their money. Nobody authorised you to use it. Legally that’s theft by a servant because you were then an employee of AFBC.

However, since you made it public that you used the prize money for HQ launch, I will give you benefit of the doubt on paying the 29 boxers their rightfully earned dues.

Given that you didn’t involve AFBC Board of Directors and IBA, you have no choice but to pay the 29 boxers the $162,500. Where you’ll get the money from is only you who knows because that was a unilateral decision.

In the meantime, I advice you to avoid firing random missiles at AFBC ahead of November 18 elections. You’re behaving like Hamas and Hezbollah in the ongoing war in the Middle East.

As an experienced boxing administrator, you know very well that a boxer doesn’t earn points unless he/she hits the target with the knuckle part of the glove.

So, your rabbit punches and butting your perceived enemies in AFBC is an exercise in futility. This wild punching will not absolve you from blame in what is now shaping up to be ‘Maputogate scandal.’

Instead of engaging yourself in unnecessary shadow boxing, I suggest you give us an update on when you’ll pay the 29 boxers from Zambia, Algeria and Mozambique.

While vying for AFBC presidency is your democratic right, in my opinion that’s a long shot under the prevailing situation. However, I wish you every luck to recapture your position.

Credit: Nenez Media Services 

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