Sibanda lays into Mashingaidze

HARARE - Zimbabwe National Women Soccer League’s president Miriam Sibanda has once again tore into embattled Zifa CEO Jonathan Mashingaidze following Zimbabwe’s poor showing at the African Union Sports Council Region 5 Under-20 Youth Games in Bulawayo.

The Young Mighty Warriors won their first match of the tournament by defeating Namibia 2-1 before succumbing to a 5-1 defeat at the hands of South Africa.

In that defeat to South Africa, the Young Mighty Warriors failed to register a single shot on target in a one-sided affair.

Sithethelelwe “Kwinji 15” Sibanda’s young charges were once again put to the sword by a ruthless Botswana side in the final game of the tournament as they lost 5-0.

Due to their win over Namibia, the Young Mighty Warriors secured third place in the group with three points.

Despite ending the tournament with a bronze medal, the Young Mighty Warriors were cruelly exposed in those heavy two defeats to South Africa and Botswana.

The women’s football boss, Sibanda has, however, laid a sharp criticism on Mashingaidze, whom she accuses of neglecting the Girl Child.

Sibanda said the results by achieved by the girls in Bulawayo are a reflection of what she has been saying that her board is routinely setup for failure by the Zifa secretariat.

“I think it’s something that we have been saying. We are not getting the support from the Zifa secretariat,” Sibanda told the Daily News on Sunday.

“Those results were expected. There is need to locate the problem before we start blaming the girls. Imagine there were no preparations whatsoever. When the girls went into camp they did not have any training equipment and the head coach had to run around.

“We notified Zifa about the issue and we were told it was SRC, who was responsible about all that; but seriously who are he custodians of the game? It is difficult when there are forces fighting against your efforts.

“Football is not just about playing; it has to start from the administration. If they had told us in time we could have run around. The results were disheartening but it was expected especially coming from such background.”

Sibanda added: “There are a lot of things happening behind the scenes. Imagine since I assumed office I have only met with Mashingaidze once. You are lucky if you get to talk to him.

“I guess he is too busy to talk with his board members. It’s difficult to get hold of him. He always gives excuses. Like for instance, since October I have been trying to get hold of him to prepare for the Zifa Unity Cup but as it stands I am in the dark.

“I think something urgent should be done because we cannot talk of development in the current setup. There is need to respect our offices.” 

Mashingaidze’s conduct has come under scrutiny in recent months following his clashes with members of the Zifa board.

Most of the association’s problems have been levelled at Mashingaidze’s lap for turning the Zifa affairs into a one-man show.

The full Zifa board last met in August and since then all key decisions at the association have been made by the CEO.

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