Zifa in trouble SPORT, Arts and Culture Minister Andrew Langa
SPORT, Arts and Culture Minister Andrew Langa

SPORT, Arts and Culture Minister Andrew Langa

Sikhumbuzo Moyo Senior Sports Reporter
ZIFA board member Fungai Chihuri signed for a total of $4,000 as board members’ expenses and Travel and Subsistence (T and S) claims soon after the Afcon 2017 qualifier at Rufaro Stadium on Sunday, it emerged last night. Chronicle Sport has it on very good authority that Chihuri, who also as the acting board member in charge of the finance committee, shared $750 (from the match revenue) with two other handpicked members of that committee.

He also signed for $2,800 as expenses for board members and $1,200 as travel and subsistence (Perdiems). “The board took that money at Rufaro Stadium; they must just own up and admit. The match reconciliation book clearly shows $2,800 was taken as board expenses and $1,200 written as T and S. Both these amounts were signed for by Chihuri,” said the source.

Zifa communications manager Xolisani Gwesela yesterday said the association was no longer commenting on the Rufaro financials. “We’re commenting no further on that subject,” said Gwesela. The association has been consistent in denying any abuse of funds. Last night, Chihuri’s mobile phone was continuously busy while he did not respond to a text message sent to him.

Meanwhile, the government has said it will soon summon Zifa over the Rufaro Stadium financials that have been dismissed as fake by employees and former finance committee members. There have been further revelations that members of the association’s three-men finance committee each pocketed $250 from the match proceeds against a background of mounting debts.

The new finance committee is led by board member Chihuri with the other members being retired referee Gladmore Muzambi and Stanslous Nyachowe. The Zifa constitution says members of the committee must be five. The new committee came into office after the controversial sacking of the Ben Gwarada led committee.

Zifa declared the highly attended match a loss making game, declaring a $12,481 loss from a net of $88,542. “Explanations are definitely needed. Zifa must certainly account for the money to the last cent,” said the Minister of Sports, Arts and Culture, Andrew Langa, yesterday. He said it was disturbing that after football fans used their hard earned cash to go and rally behind the national team, the money which was raised cannot be properly accounted for.

“We need to brief the nation accordingly, if people come in huge numbers like what happened on Sunday then certainly there’s a need to fully account for the monies, not what’s coming out now. My office will definitely summon them (Zifa) through our channels so that they can fully explain how these gate takings were used. There must never be an element of doubt,” said Minister Langa.

Meanwhile, Zifa has issued a statement dismissing what it said were ‘baseless claims that funds were abused’. “The Zimbabwe Football Association would like to inform the football fraternity and the nation that it did not abuse any funds generated from the Zimbabwe vs Guinea Africa Cup of Nations qualifier match. ZIFA would like to explicitly and categorically state that the income and expenditure report basically explains all expenses paid directly from income generated from the match,” reads the Zifa statement.

The Zifa finance committee, said Zifa, has powers to decide on creditors to be paid from match proceeds and such monies are accounted for on the income and expenses report of that particular match. “The ZIFA finance committee exercised due diligence in preparing the income and expenditure report,” said Zifa in the statement.

The statement also confirmed that transport was donated by Herentals College and the $3,000 bus hire fee on the income and expenditure report is money that was paid to another creditor who had provided transport services in the past and not Herentals College. However, the association is still to name the said transporter.

You Might Also Like