Throwing ethics out of the window

HARARE - This evening, Zimbabwean football honours the country’s best footballer for yet another year, or should we say, the best player depending on the region the sports writers who voted hail from.

Let’s face it, without trying to pre-empt the events of tonight’s awards ceremony, whose winner will only be known after the official announcement later today, certain journalists showed a shocking lack of independent approach during the selection process and demonstrated clear bias, which is a sad indictment of a supposedly civilised group of professionals.

I have never felt ashamed of being a journalist, but the scandalous behaviour and shameful conduct of fellow scribes, fuelled by an intense distrust and hatred for a club or region — have turned this once-prestigious award into the mix of farce and tragedy it is now — where regional and club alienation other than pure merit is the foremost criterion for selection.

As the fourth estate, journalists are supposed to be moral watchdogs which scrutinise the actions of organisations and society.

Certain cliques of journalists in Zimbabwe have dismally failed to play that role and instead are on the forefront of fuelling regional divisions, sadly so in a sport other countries use so well to unite people of different ethnic backgrounds.

Tragically, the voting pattern of this year’s Soccer Stars awards, as on various occasions in the past, has attracted the ire of ordinary Zimbabweans who look up to journalists as a mirror of society.

Consequently, the image of the football reporting fraternity out there is not flattering, and respect can be very difficult to regain.

I will not mourn if journalists are removed from the voting panel in future for bringing the esteemed annual awards into disrepute, but at the same time I will feel sorry for those who have, thankfully, remained firm in their fairness and professionalism when others have unashamedly thrown ethics out of the window.

Post a comment

Readers are kindly requested to refrain from using abusive, vulgar, racist, tribalistic, sexist, discriminatory and hurtful language when posting their comments on the Daily News website.
Those who transgress this civilised etiquette will be barred from contributing to our online discussions.
- Editor

Your email address will not be shared.