Banyana Banyana - OkayAfrica

09 July 2016: South Africa defender Noko Matlou (4) and United States forward Christen Press (12) both attempt to head the ball during an international friendly soccer match between South Africa and USA at Soldier Field in Chicago, IL. USA won 1-0.

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​Banyana Banyana Secure Equal Pay After South African Government & SAFA Called Out

The South African government and South African Football Association (SAFA) have committed to paying Banyana Banyana the same amount as Bafana Bafana players after being called out by the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF).

According to the Sowetan, SAFA has announced plans to increase Banyana Banyana's meagre pay following the team's recent COSAFA cup win. This comes after political opposition party, Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), called out SAFA (South African Football Association) and the South African government for Banyana Banyana's poor remuneration despite their consistent performance internationally. The EFF made calls for South Africa's women's national team to actually be paid more than their male counterparts. SAFA's National Executive Committee responded quickly because of mounting public pressure concerning the plea which has been tabled many times before.

According to TimesLIVE,The EFF reportedly wrote a critical letter addressed to SAFA, calling for the bodies to pay Banyana Banyana more following their fourth consecutive COSAFA cup win.

"This victory should signal the need to expedite equal pay and sponsorship of all national teams regardless of gender. Banyana Banyana has long proven itself to be a national asset and a source of courage in the midst of despair and despondency‚ as a result of worst economic downturn‚ the Covid-19 pandemic and most importantly‚ the rampant racism being visited upon black Africans.

SAFA spokesperson Dominic Chimhavi said equal pay for the senior men and women's teams is "a work in progress," as reported by BusinessDay. Chimhavi went on to further explain the investment problem that SAFA allegedly faces. He explained that corporate investments and sponsorships traditionally pour more money into the national male team. He further pointed out that there is "a huge potential for growth of the women's game".

"This is an issue which we are mindful of and the Safa NEC has always said that they are looking into the possibilities of making sure that whatever is done for the senior male national teams‚ should also be applied to the senior female national team."

Calls for Banyana Banyana to be paid equally to Bafana Bafana have been on the increase. Danny Jordaan, President of SAFA, promised that the women's team would get equal pay last year but Banyana Banaya reportedly did not receive the increase.

Bafana Bafana have not won any international, continental or regional tournaments in 15 years and yet still earn ten times more than Banyana Banyana. Banyana Banyana recently won the COSAFA cup for a fourth time in a row making it their seventh win overall. SAFA has not officially stated when the increase will be implemented.