Raymond Jaravaza, Sports Correspondent

ZIMBABWE Boxing Federation president (ZBF) Jim Mpalale has died.

According to his niece Lucia Mubaiwa, Mpalale passed away at his Mbizo suburb home in Kwekwe after a long illness.

“He has been battling heart complications for over 10 years and was taken seriously ill a couple of months ago. He died today (Thursday) in the early hours of the morning,” said Mubaiwa.

Mpalale rose to the Zimbabwe Boxing Federation’s top position in 2017 after spending close to nine years as chairman of the Midlands Boxing Association.

ZBF secretary-general Arvian Mathe said the sport was now poorer with the passing away of the veteran administrator.

“Mpalale was an honest and astute administrator with years of experience in boxing administration from the grassroots level right up to the top echelons of the sport. He introduced boxing at Mbizo High School in Kwekwe in the early 1990s and rose through the ranks in boxing administration to taking up the presidency of ZBF in 2017.

“He was instrumental in making sure that local boxing officials attended International Boxing Association (AIBA) R&J Certification Courses to improve the level of local boxing to international standards. Right now, we have 11 certified AIBA referees and judges up from three since Mpalale took over as president of ZBF,” said Mathe.

Mpalale is survived by a wife, three children and two grandchildren.

Burial arrangements will be announced in due course.

– @RaymondJaravaza

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