Royal AM CEO Sinky Mnisi on Wednesday held a press conference to clear the air over a number of media reports suggesting he is on his way out of the club following a rift with president Shauwn Mkhize.

Reports have circulated in recent weeks alleging Mnisi’s suspension from the club after Mkhize was said to have been discontented by the former Highlands Park co-director conducting business behind her back.

‘MaMkhize’, as the flamboyant club boss is known, addressed the rumours earlier this week.

“I don’t know why this hype about my CEO is gaining so much traction. I don’t know what it is about. I have never told you anything different from his current contract. I have never heard about his suspension. Of course, he’s still part of us. We have never announced that he’s no longer with us,” she told reporters in KZN.

Mnisi held a press conference in Johannesburg on Wednesday to address this and a number of other allegations, including the issue of coach John Maduka’s abrupt departure despite his sizeable impact on the team’s third-place finish in the DStv Premiership, which qualified them for a maiden CAF inter-club run.

“Firstly, in case you all did not know, during June when everybody had closed and gone home, I was the only person working at Royal AM – the president [Shauwn Mkhize] was also overseas,” detailed the estranged CEO in his personal media address, where he also confirmed to have taken “special leave.”

“I sent a letter of appointment to Coach Maduka to sign at the beginning of June 2022. That letter had to come with the qualifications for CAF as well as his ID [copies]. Mr. Maduka did not sign the letter of appointment as requested but at the same time did not indicate that he declined the appointment.”

“As a matter of fact, Maduka sent me his ID copy as well as the certificate for his [coaching] qualifications but never signed the appointment letter or sent it back to me. Mr. Maduka, through his agent Mr. Neo Madlala, instead wrote an email requesting the mutual termination of his contract.

“Mr. Maduka sent an email separately to confirm such, and I forwarded the email to the president of Royal AM while she was overseas – I want to make that very, very clear. The president accepted the email request and, as a matter of fact, called me from overseas, and I told her about the situation with Mr. Maduka.

“In her own words, the president said, ‘No, Mr. Maduka should not serve the month’s notice because it’s impossible for a coach to be coaching my team when he knows he wants to leave.  So, I prepared the letter accepting the mutual termination request, through the attorneys of Royal AM on the same terms as directed by the president of Royal AM, for Mr Maduka to sign, which he then signed.”

“It is quite impossible that through some sources it should be said that I fired Maduka; I didn’t work well with Maduka and I didn’t give the reasons. What reasons would I have given if, in actual fact, Maduka indicated that he didn’t want to canvas any reasons?

“Secondly, I had given Maduka a letter of appointment and he didn’t sign that letter. Instead, he sent me a mutual termination request. So why should I be accused of firing Maduka without the knowledge of the president? It is neither here nor there.”

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