Lions of the North plead for help


Highlands Park have launched an urgent plea to the City of Ekurhuleni Municipality for assistance at their home base in Tembisa.

The Lions of the North have gone so far as suggesting that they might be forced to move away from the Makhulong Stadium due to the state of the stadium.

Highlands have been based at the multi-sports stadium for several years and have never enlisted an alternate venue, making their home ground a fortress in recent times.

Though, the 10 000-seater underwent upgrades in 2009 prior to the 2010 FIFA World Cup, no further investment has taken place, with supporters and media alike having to endure minimal comfort when attending matches.

However, the club have now called on the local municipality to intervene and respond to their sincere appeal for assistance in upgrading the facilities.

"It is sad that we have to inform you that, we might have to leave Ekurhuleni. We have engaged with City of Ekurhuleni and we're not getting any joy!” said Highlands director Sinky Mnisi at a press briefing on Tuesday.

“We have empowered more than 80 [of] the security personnel [from] Tembisa. Some are now employed by private companies.

"We have been literally begging City of Ekurhuleni for the past five years. Financially, the [Makhulong] Stadium is not up to standard – the media area, no lift, the fence is very low, you can't expect people to arrive at 12h00 until 18h00 sitting on concrete.

“We have heard promises. It's sad and really heart breaking that for the past five years, we've not had the first citizen visiting the boys or watching our games, yet the Mayor Mzwandile Masina is able to attend the social games in December.

“No one wants to support us, Mayor, Director of Sports.

"From the deepest of our hearts, we want to stay in [Tembisa]. We don't even have an alternative venue because we hope and believe that City of Ekurhuleni and the Premier David Makhura will help us.

“We belong here to this community, but we feel left isolated by the City of Ekurhuleni Mayor! We are not here to blackmail anyone. We’re just putting facts to you as they are. Please visit the field after this and take a look for yourself.”