Damaging culture of silence

HARARE - I have been following, with keen interest,  the different forms of punishment meted out to individuals found guilty of match-fixing by the Justice Ebrahim Commission, and the six-month ban slapped on former national team coach Norman Mapeza particularly had me thinking.

The Commission justifies the rather lenient sentence slapped on Mapeza by arguing in the report that while he refused to accept the betting syndicate’s money on one of the Warriors’ escapades at the height of Asiagate,  Mapeza heard no evil and saw no evil and continued with his life as if everything was normal.

One person that comes to mind when it comes to zipping his mouth is former Zifa president Wellington Nyatanga, under whose very nose the Asiagate match-fixing scam took place.

Nyatanga is an absolute gentleman, but did he hear no evil and saw no evil like Mapeza, or we have to give it up to the masterminds of the scandal for the best ever kept secret in the history of Zimbabwean football?

Whatever the case maybe, the culture of keeping quiet on important things has had a disastrous damaging effect not only in football, but in different spheres of Zimbabwean life.

We see it everyday, in our social life, in our politics and in our economy.

There is no doubt that Asiagate was a shameful deed which disgraced the nation and portrayed Zimbabweans as a treacherous and greedy lot who would do anything for money.

Undoubtedly this regrettable phase has been a very serious blow to the honesty, integrity and the reputation of our country in the eyes of the world.

If only someone had decided to speak out instead of sweeping the scandal under the carpet.

Martin Luther King Jr. once said: “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”

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