CHIPPA’S PROPOSED RELOCATION TO PE IS OFF
By: Khanyisani Dlomo
The newly-promoted Premier Soccer League outfit, Chippa United, is no longer relocating to Port Elizabeth.
This comes after a series of meetings between the club, Nelson Mandela Metro and the Nelson Mandela Stadium’s management to which they could not reach an agreement.
It emerged ealier this month that the Cape Town-based club could move to the Eastern Cape when club Chairman, Siviwe Mpengesi, said that the decision to relocate the club was due to sponsorship he was getting from the province.
The decision was taken after the last meeting on Saturday. “We will no longer be relocating the team to Port Elizabeth as we had earlier anticipated and it was reported in some sections of the media,” said Mpengesi.
“It was obvious that our proposal was appealing to the people of the Eastern Cape who had interest to see us playing at Nelson Mandela Stadium,” Mpengesi added.
He said it was never about money or competition. “Our move was motivated by the interest we have in the development of football in the Eastern Cape.
“We felt we also had to respect the process that was already underway as far as negotiations between the Metro and the other Club are concerned.”
Mpengesi – who was born and bred in the Eastern Cape before moving to Western Cape in 1996 – said it’s a sad announcement but said they have plans to bring the club to the province.
“We are committed in expanding our footprint to the Eastern Cape. The true value of football and the commitment we’ve made to those close to us, we will not be all lost in the Eastern Cape; there will be plans of bringing the club to the province soon one way or another.”
The club made its second stint in the top flight football and Mpengesi said he has now redirected his focus in building a strong club to compete next season.
“We are now focusing on our preparations for next season. Our objective is to be competitive and to be a force to be reckoned with in the PSL,” added Mpengesi.
“The players are off to recharge and we will announce our preseason plans in the next couple of days. We are fortunate this time around that we have enough time to take stock and plan for the upcoming season.”
Mpengesi added that they also focus on re-building Phillipi stadium and make it their fortress this coming season and hopefully for many years to come.
“We would like to see the stadium hosting no less than 20 000 fans in the near future.”