By Staff Writers
The Econet Premier League (EPL) champions Matlama FC have clashed with the Premier League Management Committee (PLMC) on whether Matlama can use a Vodacom Lesotho container at Frontline to sell its membership cards.
The spat was triggered by a memorandum Matlama’s Secretary General Liteboho Tlebere sent to the supporters, patrons, sponsors and the media on Thursday last week.
“As we verge into the 2019/2020 season, kindly take note that membership is open until July 31, 2019 for this upcoming or current season as all members are expected to subscribe forthwith before the said date,” Tlebere wrote in the memo.
He further stated that membership would be obtainable in two categories (ordinary membership M50 and Platinum at M300) on the specified dates in designated areas around Maseru.
“Any other time during the week at Frontline (Matlama/Vodacom container at carwash) from 0900 to 1700hrs,” he said.
It is this particular statement that the Premier League management did not take lying down.
Using the email address firstname.lastname@example.org PLMC on Friday replied to Tlebere and said: “Your mail is well received and noted, but could you note that the use of our sponsors competitor’s facility is totally not allowed. Please change the venue asap (as soon as possible).
“Mr Tlebere, Econet as the Main League sponsor does not approve the EPL teams using the competitor’s products that being Vodacom. In that light, selling your membership cards at a Vodacom container is totally not acceptable in so many ways, we therefore advice you not to sell your cards at a Vodacom container.”
Tlebere also responded later the same day.
“Noted with thanks. Your point is clear but our cards have nothing to do with the sponsor, its private property. But out of courtesy it would seem right not to, give mileage to Vodacom but we own that container, it doesn’t belong to Vodacom and we are going to paint it blue soon. Your advice highly regarded, we shall change that venue sir,” he said.
However, Tlebere’s admission that the team will change the venue did not help put the issue to bed as the PLMC wrote another email to him and this time fired a warning shot across Tlebere’s bows.
“Would you kindly do the painting of the container before providing any teams services in the container branded Vodacom. PLMC will regularly visit the site to ensure Matlama FC as one of the EPL teams that it uses the current sponsors products at all times,” the committee warned.
An apparently irked Tlebere responded again and said “… we shall not be using the said container” but PLMC was still having none of it.
It wrote to Tlebere again yesterday.
“Ntate Tlebere, please be cooperative……,” it said.
It was becoming clear now that like a woman, PLMC wanted to have the last word in this argument.
Anything Tlebere said after that became the beginning of a new argument.
At around 2pm yesterday, he wrote and email and said: “I shall also impress upon my colleagues and club to oblige.”
PLMC has not come back, at least for now. NW