Sikhumbuzo Moyo, Senior Sports Reporter
CONTROVERSIAL Zifa Bulawayo Metropolitan Province chairman Francis Ntutha has been accused of unconstitutionally changing the association’s bank signatories and making an illegal withdrawal of $1 000 on July 13.
Ntutha, who had been suspended by the provincial board on impropriety involving unapproved withdrawal of association funds and converting them to his own use, was recently reinstated by the Zifa national executive committee without any hearing.
His reinstatement resulted in all but one board members threatening to resign in protest.
Zifa national board responded by ‘removing’ them, saying it had “accepted their resignations”.
The change of signatories and withdrawal of $1 000 was revealed by provincial board member Madza Takawira in a strongly worded email to the Zifa national executive committee which was also copied to all provincial executive members, including Ntutha.
Takawira said three bank signatories Allan Mpofu, Otrick Siziba and himself were no longer board members, leaving only Siduduzile Lunga as the only other legitimate signatory, according to a standing board’s resolution.
He said the resolution was clear that a minimum of two signatories can make a withdrawal at any given time and since money was withdrawn on July 13, it therefore meant that new signatories were added without a board resolution, making the changes a legal nullity and violation of the constitution.
“Our chairman was a signatory before his suspension. We made a resolution as a board and instructed the bank to remove his name, so for him to be reinstated, a resolution has to be made by the board also. Since the reinstatement of our chairman, the board member for administration has tried without success to call for a meeting, but the chairman is saying he is the only one who can call for a meeting as and when he wants and will only meet with those that he chooses and only after the Zifa national executive committee has advised him to do so.
“So are our meetings now decided by Zifa national? May I bring to your attention that since lockdown up to now we have never held a meeting as a board. If there was a meeting then it could only have been attended by Francis Ntutha and John Mutero and the two of them do not form a quorum, hence all the decisions they make are unconstitutional ,” wrote Takawira in his email.
He said by virtue of the unconstitutionality of the resolution, if the meeting did take place, there cannot be any change or addition to the signatories and by the same token, no withdrawals or any bank transaction can be done based on resolutions from an illegal meeting.
Takawira said Ntutha was suspended in the first place because of blatant flouting of a resolution made by the board that no money is to be withdrawn without the approval of the board.
“Now what we don’t know is under whose approval and in what capacity and under whose authority was the withdrawal made and the signatories changed. This wanton flouting of the constitution and disregard for constitutionally made resolutions, especially where finances are involved, is a cause for concern and is detrimental to the development of football in our province,” warned Takawira.
Concerted efforts to get a comment from Ntutha were fruitless.
Meanwhile, Zifa’s decision to keep the quartet of Mpofu, Siziba, Takawira and Charles Ndlovu from exercising their duties as Bulawayo board members on claims that they had resigned in protest over the reinstatement of Ntutha without trial has been described as high level of “foolishness” by one of the four.
“Let this Mamutse (Joseph) show the nation our letters of resignation. Instead, our correspondence to Zifa national was rejected because they said it had no signatures so what is this now? It’s plain foolishness for a lack of a comical word,” said the member.