The owner of the 🇱🇾Libyan hotel where the Marumo Gallants duo are held hostage, Dr Ali Elzargha, has opened up to about the ordeal.
He claims that the club is now making excuses to pay the money.
“There was an agreement from the gentleman [Abram Sello]; he told me that I can hold the guys while he gets my money,” Elzargha.
“I told him I would cancel all plane tickets until I got my money. Then he said that I should allow the players to go because they have another match [on Sunday against Saint Eloi Lupopo]. But I can hold the two guys until I get my money,” he explained.
After that, he started playing games with me when the team arrived in South Africa. He didn’t honour our agreement, and I didn’t know what was happening. Even these guys here don’t know what is happening, and I don’t know when this game will end.
At first, the club said they were not allowed to send a lot of money. After that, they said they had a holiday [20 March], but after the holiday, they said it takes seven days to send money. I gave them my Turkish, Dubai, and Ukraine accounts to ensure they can send my money.”
“They begged me to help the club because they don’t know anyone in Libya to help them to get tickets. Without me, they would not have had tickets, played the match, or even gotten to Libya without my help. Before I paid anything, I explained the cost and they agreed. But after playing the match and having to go back, they started playing games. I helped them with everything.”
“I am not holding the officials by my own will. This is an agreement between the Chairman and me. He told me to hold these guys until I give you the money. So after that, he sent US$ 12 000 [R216 570], then stopped. If I get my money, yes [I will let them go], why not? I am only holding them because of the agreement.
I also feel ashamed that I am holding the guys here. They want to go home and be with their families, and the Chairman should be in their place now, not them.”