Lesotho rugby heavyweights and defending league champions Giants have pulled out of the Lesotho Rugby League with immediate effect citing gross maladministration and bad standard of refereeing.
Giants released a press statement announcing their decision on Wednesday.
“Giants Rugby club is extremely disappointed in the manner state of the rugby affairs are continuously mismanaged and gross maladministration is at play (sic),” read the press statement.
“Giants players and management make this decision with a heavy heart where to date an Annual General Meeting (AGM) has never sat to evaluate the performance of the current crop of self-appointed administrators who deploy bullying tactics within administration,” the statement continued.
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The statement added that Giants players were unfairly treated on several occasions and a player was suspended on a match day for five games.
“Giants players were unfairly treated on matters of alleged “disciplinary hearings” where a player was suspended on match day for five games for a transgression that he never received a proper hearing for. The refereeing has been substandard to say the very least in all our matches and the Secretary General / Public Relations Officer/ “face of Lesotho Rugby” (all in one) deliberately refereed a match with no relevant or prior experience of refereeing in order to influence and frustrate our players. Giants were also disappointed at the way the FLR management handled our post-match grievances by threatening to suspend players further,” the Giants statement reads.
It continues to allege that there is a self-appointed trio within the FLR who are running the association like it is a personal business.
“There is a self-appointed trio who run FLR like their own personal business and will stop at nothing to remain in power. Rugby in Lesotho is in disarray and will continue doing so if an urgent AGM, financial audit and eventual investigation is not conducted in the affairs of the people embodied to run the federation,” Giants said.
Giants will now only compete in the Eastern Free State Griffons league in South Africa where they finished in fifth position out of ten teams in 2015. They will have a series of friendly matches against Ladybrand, Ficksburg and Crusaders Bloemfontein before the Free State league kicks off on March 22.