SO, IT seems South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (Sascoc) officials Gideon Sam and Tubby Reddy could make a surprise appearance on the South African Football Association’s (Safa’s) Christmas shopping list this year.

Now there’s something I didn’t see coming, given the antagonism between Sascoc and the folk at Safa House.

The two bodies quietly met this week and were somehow able to resolve long-simmering tension that at one stage made even the feud between the Montague and Capulet families look like a Sunday picnic.

Hostilities have now seemingly ceased and I imagine there were a lot of hugs and air kisses after the meeting if comments attributed to Sam, the Sascoc president, in the press release are anything to go by. "I am happy that the meeting has been very fruitful and the fact that we are going to drive the sports agenda in collaboration with Safa," Sam said after Monday’s meeting.

"Well, blow me down," to quote Popeye the sailor man.

For those who don’t know or have forgotten, the two bodies have had an uneasy relationship since 2012 when reports claimed that Sascoc was investigating Safa. Such was erstwhile Safa CEO Robin Petersen’s ire at the time that I was convinced he’d blow his gasket.

The whole sorry mess played out in the newspapers and Reddy notably toned down the rhetoric a notch a few days later, describing their approach to Safa as a pleasant request for information on behalf of Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula — not an investigation.

Mbalula apparently had question marks about the way Safa did things at the time and wanted an explanation from the mother body.

Relations between Sascoc and Safa plunged after that episode and there were even public exchanges in the media between the two bodies.

Petersen’s successor, Dennis Mumble, picked up the baton and was particularly peeved by Reddy, against whom he proposed a motion of no confidence last year.

Gripping stuff.

For those who don’t know or have forgotten, the two bodies have had an uneasy relationship since 2012 when reports claimed that Sascoc was investigating Safa. Such was erstwhile Safa CEO Robin Petersen’s ire at the time that I was convinced he’d blow his gasket.

Mumble complained at the time that Reddy had released unsubstantiated information in an anonymous dossier to the media without giving Safa an opportunity to defend itself.

Reddy was unfazed by the vote of no confidence and was quoted as saying Safa officials facing allegations of match-fixing were trying to deflect attention away from themselves.

Crazy isn’t it?

Relations reached new lows when Safa threatened to withdraw its membership from Sascoc three months ago.

At the root of the problem was a demand by Sascoc to audit Safa’s financial statements.

Sascoc said it would appoint a three-person team from its finance committee to meet Safa regarding its financial position and turnaround strategy.

Safa instead turned to Fifa and the Confederation of African Football for assistance in rejecting the demand.

The body also raised the prospect of legal action against Sascoc for alleged defamation.

An unfazed Reddy said Safa reported a loss of R47m last year and Sascoc was obliged to assess the situation.

So for the longest time it seemed Safa would go through with their threat and withdraw from Sascoc.

The soccer body risked participation in the 2016 Rio Games in Rio with the stance as that tournament falls under the Olympic body. A senior Safa executive member even told BDlive that they were prepared to face the consequences of withdrawing.

Lo and behold, the two bodies kiss and make up this week while no one is looking.

Of course, it helps that Safa are now financially flush and have reversed the R47m loss.

The R1bn broadcast deal with pay-TV outfit Siyaya TV, the equally lucrative sponsorship agreements with the Motsepe Foundation, Nike, Grand Parade Investments (Burger King) and Avis, among others, have all seemingly helped iron out the longstanding relations in the most dramatic manner.

Even Reddy was suitably joyous after the meeting and was willing to let bygones be bygones. "Sascoc is pleased with the results of this meeting we had with Safa," he said.

Well I’ll be damned!

Here’s hoping the truce lasts.

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