… Heita was a grounded and collected young man
By Cassius Moetie
I got to know Eliphas as a humble, submissive and very simple football player of Black Africa way back when ‘BA’ was known as the Cup Champions.
Eliphas had various coaches who have all played for Black Africa before, and I know this because together with Boni Paulino we are probably the longest serving executive members Black Africa ever had.
From all the players, the late Eliphas played with and during those times, he stood out and left a lasting impression on me. The late Eliphas, like any player, was subjected to tough selection choices of coaches BA had; and sometimes coaches were not always genuine and fair in selecting the best team to field for a particular game. Eliphas experienced the same; until he expressed his concern as assertive as he was.
This created animosity between him and his coach at the time and Eliphas escalated the matter to the executive requesting for a hearing.
I remember vividly that my colleague, Boni was still the chairperson at the time and the disciplinary committee consisted of the chairperson, myself, Agnes Tjongarero [before she was appointed a deputy minister and or MP and the late Broertjie Swartz.
We objectively listened to both sides of the complainant [the late Eliphas] and the accused [the coach, whose name I cannot reveal]. We eventually resolved that the coach already benched Eliphas for a few games without having followed a fair process in dealing with the discipline.
And the disciplinary committee overturned the ‘punishment’ to bench Eliphas and we ordered the coach to recall Eliphas immediately to camp and start training and that the coach considers him for selection.
Despite that finding, Eliphas was such a humble, grounded and collected young man, who before training commenced, following the outcome of the disciplinary committee, requested a few minutes from the coach to address and humbly apologized to his fellow players about the incident and how it unfolded.
He promised his teammates and his coaching staff that he will subject himself to the instructions and game-plan of the coach during training and in an official match each time he is selected and that every player can expect 200 percent input and delivery from him.
I was there and I heard him making those commitments to this coach and fellow players.
He was an exemplary young man whom BA should have absorbed in its leadership structures. BA’s culture is and has always been that only former players can coach this huge football brand which is still delivering results. Why? Because only our former players understand the culture, discipline and roots of this people-centric football brand, this is what made BA such an adorable brand.
He was born and bred as a Black Africa football product. I worked with Eliphas at FNB and we had a few things in common; we were BA and we were FNB colleagues and he would often come to my office for counselling in his personal and professional life.
He was a disciplinarian and while we were at FNB, in one of our sessions, I advised him that he must retire from football while his career and love for the game was still at its peak. I also advised him to pursue further studies because the career of a footballer is very short. I was impressed to know that he followed my advice while playing football and he enrolled for part-time studies while in the employ of FNB.
Focusing on his personal live and building his love affair with his beautiful girl-friend at the time, Dina, whom he pledged to share his entire life with as his wife. The two invited my wife and I to their wedding and the decision to get married certainly did not come as a surprise because I knew this was the career path Eliphas has crafted for himself to be a responsible husband, father and Namibian citizen.
He later resigned from FNB to pursue a new career as an entrepreneur which he has discharged with distinction. Since he left football, he paid attention to his family, first and foremost, he simultaneously build his business career and grew as a success-story; however, he never stayed away from BA matches, be it NPL League matches or NFA Cup games.
His untimely death as young as he was left a huge vacuum in various sectors of the Namibian economy and football has lost out BIG time because football did not reach out to the products that can add value to further develop and grow the football property.
I can only advise the widow, beautiful and very young children of the late Eliphas, his family, relatives and close friends that it is during difficult moments of sorrow and bereavement that one should find solace in the amazing grace of our good Lord. It is during these tough times that God tests the level of faith we have in Him; and I have no doubt in believing that all of us, especially, the bereaved family of the late Eliphas are God-fearing and God will always be with you, without a doubt.
May his soul rest in eternal peace!
Confidente. Lifting the Lid. Copyright © 2015