Suspended Zifa board efforts hit brickwall

11 Jan, 2022 - 00:01 0 Views
Suspended Zifa board efforts hit brickwall Felton Kamambo

The Chronicle

Ricky Zililo, Senior Sports Reporter
MEMBERS of the suspended Zifa board, which had been agitating for the Warriors to be thrown out of the Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) were left with egg on their faces when Zimbabwe played their opening group match in the finals.

So desperate was the suspended Zifa board and its president Felton Kamambo that they phoned Caf on Saturday calling for the Warriors’ expulsion from Afcon.

The Sports and Recreation Commission (SRC) suspended Kamambo and his board on November 16 for alleged mismanagement and failing to deal with sexual harassment complaints raised by female referees, among other charges.

Since their suspension, they have been fighting to be reinstated and appealed to global football governing body Fifa to slap Zimbabwe with a ban from all football activities.

Fifa had “given” SRC until January 3 to reinstate the suspended executive committee or a ban would be imposed, which would have meant the Warriors being kicked out of the Afcon finals in Cameroon.

Kamambo told South African weekly publication Sunday World on Sunday, just a day before the Warriors’ opening game against Senegal that the Zimbabwean delegation at the Afcon finals in Cameroon is being managed by a Government-appointed body.

Sunday World reported that Kamambo had asked Caf not to accredit any Zimbabwean official, players and coaching staff, alleging they had no mandate from Zifa.

However, the Zifa secretariat, led by acting chief executive officer Xolisani Gwesela has been in charge of all Warriors’ logistics since the executive committee was suspended, with the SRC providing funding.

Caf delivered a body blow to the suspended officials by ignoring their calls to deny the Warriors’ delegation accreditation.

The Warriors’ expulsion from Afcon would have turned public anger on the SRC and the suspended board was banking on such a calamity.

After realising that their shameful act was futile, Kamambo then tried to hoodwink the nation by wishing the Warriors success in a statement released yesterday morning.

In the statement, Kamambo said: “The Warriors’ Afcon dance since 2004 has not been without negative side shows, which side shows should embolden the Warriors to do duty for the millions of Zimbabweans back home and those in the diaspora with unquestionable patriotism and commitment. Zimbabwean football is bigger than personal egos and turf wars.

The Warriors have a great future as individuals and as a team, beyond the end of the Afcon finals and such, should give their all to represent their motherland.”

Crucial to note is that the only side show that hovered on the Warriors’ camp was the suspension of the Zifa board, but the SRC harnessed adequate resources to ensure the players’ welfare is catered for, leaving the team to focus on the job.

This was in contrast to pay and allowance squabbles that rocked the Warriors’ camp at the 2019 Afcon edition held in Egypt, as players threatened to boycott matches if their demands were not met.

– @ZililoR

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