Lovemore Dube Senior Sports Editor
Highlanders and FC Platinum each received $346 from an Independence Cup semi-final match which grossed $26,010 at Barbourfields Stadium on Sunday.
It makes for sad reading that the owners of the product are walking out of stadia empty-handed with organisations which should probably be volunteering their services smiling all the way to the bank.
FC Platinum won the semi-final tie 6-5 after a penalty shootout watched by a crowd of 6,912 fans who were eager to see the readiness of the two Southern Region giants.
Troubled Zifa who organised the match received the second highest amount of $3,483. This was 15 percent of the gross gate-takings while the owners of the venue, Bulawayo City Council received $4,644 as their 20 percent.
Value added tax which the clubs are now compelled to pay (15 percent) accounted for $3,483 with the Sport and Recreation Commission’s six percent $1,393.
Other expenditure items included $1,789 to police who perhaps because of the significance of the event should have provided their services for free. Club treasurers got $300, protocol $150 and cost of tickets $791. Assistant chief cashiers who numbered about six were paid a total of $1,200 and with club treasurers and chief cashiers available, there was virtually no need for these.
An amount of $960 was paid to cashiers of the day and ticket tearers had all the reason to smile getting $680 for a largely effortless task.
An amount of $5,536 went to sundry expenses which included camping and transport for the teams.
A livid Highlanders chairman, Peter Dube said the scenario was bad for the clubs as they were virtually left empty-handed yet they had the product to sell. He said it was unfortunate that everyone else who did not incur any costs was leaving stadia happy when clubs who bring fans to stadia were let to suffer on their own.
“We continue to be milked; we have the product, people come to watch our players but at the end of the day we are left with nothing. It is prudent for the other organisations to take any inner look at themselves and help the club reap something from these matches,” said the Bosso boss.
Dube said as a club they were not happy with the conduct of police who come in numbers to their matches. He said his club’s games attract probably the largest number of security details than any other game in the country.
He said however, they found it disturbing that police would watch FC Platinum fans invade the pitch and take no action but set dogs on theirs.
He praised his fans for their maturity and called on them not to invade pitches after matches.
“I like their spirit of self-restraint. They have matured and we expect them to appreciate their team and turn their backs on the pitch soon after the whistle and go home to celebrate,” added Dube.