SABC broadcast blackout after Bafana vs Nigeria negotiations with Safa collapse again

14 November 2018 - 13:53
By Tiisetso Malepa
SABC broadcast vans outside Thohoyandou Stadium in Venda in October 2018.
Image: Philip Maeta SABC broadcast vans outside Thohoyandou Stadium in Venda in October 2018.

The SA Football Association (Safa) and the SABC confirmed on Wednesday that the Bafana Bafana and Banyana Banyana respective matches against Nigeria this coming weekend will not be broadcast on the national broadcaster’s platforms after the latest negotiations reached a deadlock.

Football-mad South Africans will once again face a national team blackout on the public broadcaster when Bafana take on the Super Eagles of Nigeria in a crucial 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) qualifying match at FNB Stadium.

Banyana's Women's Afcon opening match is on Sunday against the West Africans.

“The SABC and Safa have reached a deadlock in their (latest) negotiations on the coverage of the home matches for Bafana Bafana Afcon qualifier matches‚” said SABC spokesperson Neo Momodu on Wednesday.

Safa acting chief executive Russell Paul revealed that the two parties met two weeks ago in a fresh bid to look at ways to work with each other for future Bafana home matches but nothing came out of the meeting.

Paul said Safa tried to come up with a concept of a pay-as-you-go arrangement with the SABC as there is no contract in place between the two parties‚ but again it yielded no positive results.

“We have discussed with the SABC opportunities and possibilities of how we can work with each other on a game-by-game arrangement but still they have declined‚” said Paul.

Kickoff for the Bafana match is at 3pm on Saturday on two pay-TV SuperSport channels – SS4 and SS10.

Banyana play their Nigerian counterparts a day later in the fishing port city of Cape Coast (5.15pm).

Banyana have been drawn with Nigeria‚ Zambia and Kenya in Group B for the tournament that will be staged in Ghana from November 17 to December 1.

Bafana and Banyana will both square off against Nigeria‚ their biggest rivals on the continent‚ this weekend in crucial Afcon contests which carry different weights respectively and will both not be broadcast on SABC.

The annual Nelson Mandela Challenge Cup versus Paraguay on Tuesday‚ in honour of the revered former statesman at Durban's Moses Mabhida Stadium‚ will also not be televised live on SABC platforms.

SABC and Safa are at loggerheads because of monetary valuation of broadcast rights to national teams’ home matches.

The SABC has been paying Safa R110m for the broadcast rights to the Bafana‚ Banyana and junior national team matches for the past three years.

But the cash-strapped public broadcaster offered just R10m for the same rights for a new deal after the initial contract expired in April this year.

The SABC is sticking to its offer of R10m while Safa continues to reject it outright.

SABC failed to broadcast the last Bafana home match as Stuart Baxter’s team walloped Seychelles 6-0 at FNB Stadium.

Broadcast details:

Saturday‚ November 17

South Africa v Nigeria - Live on SS4 HD and SS10 HD

Sunday‚ November 18

Nigeria v South Africa (5.15pm) - SS4HD