Sikhumbuzo Moyo, Senior Sports Reporter
CONTROVERSY surrounds distribution of the Fifa Covid-19 bailout funds for women’s football after Zimbabwe Women’s Football boss Barbra Chikosi told Division One clubs that Zifa had not received the money from Fifa.
This comes about three weeks after Super League teams received their allocation, while allegations continue to swell that some defunct teams were among recipients of the bailout fund.
Fifa allocated US$500 000 for Women’s football Covid-19 Relief Grant to all its 211 member associations.
Bulawayo’s 12 Division One teams have expressed annoyance over the opaque manner in which the funds are being handled.
According to leaked WhatsApp group chats, some club executive members are clearly unhappy with the lack of clarity, with some saying it feeds suspicions that the fund has been abused.
They said the divide and rule tactic being used by the national association will not work because clubs and players talk to each other and they know what’s going on.
“We are sorry guys that the future is bleak for our beautiful women’s game. Simple matters like communication are critical, we are not crying for it even though the girls (players) need it, but if it was seen fit for (us) all not to have then there is nothing that can be done,” reads one messages gleaned by Chronicle Sport.
Women’s football Southern Region boss Takundwa Chimundiya concurred with clubs that lack of clarity was causing unnecessary anxiety within the women’s football family.
“Its quiet now, we haven’t received anything yet,” Chimundiya told Chronicle Sport.
In a message to the affiliates, Chikosi said teams will get the money as soon as Zifa received the relief funds from Fifa, despite telling Chronicle Sport last month that her constituency comprised only the 16 Super League teams.
“Please note that Fifa funds are not yet received. As soon as Zifa receives the funds, payments will be done to all who are to receive the Covid-19 relief funds,” reads her message.
Fifa made it clear to its member associations that transparency and accountability must be the cornerstone in distributing the funds.