Lions-Guma spat enters new phase

Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Lions, Original Content on 25 Jan 2012 at 07:00
Tagged with : , , ,

Reports yesterday confirmed that the Lions erstwhile partners, Robert Gumede’s Guma TAC group, have initiated legal proceedings against the Golden Lions Rugby Union. The issue in question seems to be an oustanding loan to the value of around R14m.

According to a media release from Guma, the company stepped in and bailed the Lions out late in 2010 after the Union was battling to meet its financial commitments, including the paying of players’ wages. Guma alleges that the loan was made in good faith and helped the Lions to get back onto their feet and avoid being in breach of contract with their players, all of whom would presumably have left had they not received their salaries.

The fact that the Guma are claiming that their intervention allowed the Lions to sign “top internationals like Butch James and Lionel Mapoe” raises and eyebrow; we all know what an upstanding individual Mapoe is, but last time I checked he wasn’t an international of any sort, top or bottom.

Be that as it may, when Gumede and his friends walked away from the proposed equity deal in July last year, it seems they forgot to take their R14m with them and are now launching a joint offensive in both the media and the courts to recover it. The Lions, of course, are disputing the whole shebang and while Kevin de Klerk doesn’t seem to be denying outright that anything is owed, certainly isn’t of the opinion that Guma’s side of the story (or valuation of what’s outstanding) is correct.

It’s all getting pretty ugly, in other words and I can’t help but feel that Guma’s real objective here is to do as much damage as they can to the Lions brand and reputation, rather than to recover the money, which is a paltry sum to them anyway and less that half of what they intended to spend on buying shoes for Beast Mtawarira’s wife anyway. Given how their press release states something about how much they care about the Lions fans, I for one can’t see how their current actions bear that out.

There’s a saying about laying down with dogs and waking up with fleas – I guess that can be changed in this case to say that if you lay down with Lions, you wake up with less money, as Guma have now discovered! Jokes aside, though, it would be great for Lions fans (and all the rest of us) if the two parties could quietly bury their differences and put this nasty episode behind them.


  • you make a few good points . It seems to me that Gumede want to portray themselves as victims .

    I think What Kevin De Klerk is trying to do is to have Gumede and them say you owe R X . instead of them doing what they are now and just saying .. OHHHH OHHH you owe us a lot of money oh no …

    But we will see . what doesnt kill you make you stronger … Based on this if the Lions dont get declared bankrupt they should be VERY strong and win Super rugby heheh 😛

  • Comment 1, posted at 25.01.12 07:25:00 by Zibbie Reply
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  • Guma Tac … JOU MA SE TOL !!! 👿

  • Comment 2, posted at 25.01.12 07:39:34 by CoffeeshopBok ;-) Reply

  • well the lions better sort themselves out or else they gonna create an easy situation for SARU with regards to which team the KINGS are gonna replace, even though I don’t see the Kings playing super rugby any time soon.

  • Comment 3, posted at 25.01.12 07:43:08 by RuckingFun Reply

  • the only thing the lions will win this year is a couple more fans at the games. 😛

  • Comment 4, posted at 25.01.12 08:17:43 by pete69 Reply

  • @pete69 (Comment 4) :

    Thats what they said last year as well ..

    still struggling to wash the fish smell of the Currie cup though … 😈

  • Comment 5, posted at 25.01.12 08:26:06 by Zibbie Reply
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  • The deal was originally about R30 million a year and in bout 7 months they paid R14 million, looks to me like Guma owes the Lions money

  • Comment 6, posted at 25.01.12 08:36:21 by Mutley Reply
  • Lions should work out a payment plan. The money is legally owed to the Guma group, no question about it. Guma invested the money in good faith that the deal will go through. When it didn’t good faith was broken, thus the loan needs to be paid back.

    If the Lions does not sort themselves out fast, this can get very ugly very quickly.

    Hehehehe, it’ll be funny if Guma gets Mapoe and Butch James in a settlement deal!

  • Comment 7, posted at 25.01.12 09:55:10 by PTAShark Reply
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  • @PTAShark (Comment 7) :

    i dont think anybody is sure at this stages what exactly is owned

  • Comment 8, posted at 25.01.12 09:59:24 by Zibbie Reply
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  • @Mutley (Comment 6) : Deal was never sealed, Lions backed out. That means they owe Guma.

  • Comment 9, posted at 25.01.12 09:59:46 by PTAShark Reply
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