The South African Players Association has stepped up their efforts to assist Eastern Province Kings players who have not received their salaries for October.
rugby365 can reveal that a number of players have already received food vouchers from SARPA.
The latest development comes in the wake of confirmation that no staff or players have received their October salaries.
As a result three players – loose forward Tim Agaba, centre Tim Whitehead and prop Lizo Gqoboka – have already terminated their contracts with the Eastern Province Rugby Union.
Nyaniso Sam, a spokesperson for the South African Rugby Players Association, confirmed that they have been assisting players out of the union’s “hardship fund”.
“We are assisting those players who require it,” Sam told rugby365, adding: “It is for basic needs to keep them going.”
The ongoing cash crisis have resulted in public protest by the players on several occasions this year – staying away from training on some occasions and taking to wearing white armbands in one match.
This followed unpaid salaries in June, July and August.
Salaries were eventually paid, with reports claiming the Nelson Mandela Bay taxpayers’ money were used to foot the bills.
However, the October salaries have still not been paid.
There is also a court case pending in which the Nelson Mandela Bay Ratepayers Association and trade union AfriForum – who revealed the taxpayers saga – are challenging the legality of the re-appointment of Access Management as operators of the NMB Stadium.
EPRU President Cheeky Watson is currently abroad, speaking to a potential sponsor – reportedly a giant oil and mining conglomerate in Australia.
A statement from the Kings last Friday said a letter from the President, Watson, has been received and has been “disseminated to all staff and players”.
“The letter explains the current situation to them and has asked the players to bear with us just a little longer,” the statement said.
“We are still experiencing cash flow issues and will not be in a position to release any funds today [Friday].
“We are continuing to engage with our various stakeholders to find a solution.”
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Article source: http://www.iafrica.com/articles/1012428.html