Minister offside on Fifa sanctions

EDITOR — The supporters of Zimbabwe football must come out guns blazing at the deputy minister of Sport for reckless statements instigating government interference into football matters.

Not because they support Cuthbert Dube or the Zifa board but because they are conscious of the far-reaching consequences of such an action.

The minister has exposed herself as being a short-sighted person who is not really abreast with Fifa statutes that govern football.

Supporters must be concerned that the minister did not bother to consult them to hear their views as they are the owners of the game who are privy to the goings-on in football.

Supporters must refuse to be rail-roaded into supporting actions that have negative ripple effects on the future generation.

Imagine that a 16-year-old footballer will be 21 years old by the time the ban expires if say Zimbabwe is banned for five years by Fifa.

Has the minister really considered the negative effects of possible Fifa action on both Zimbabwe’s football and its economy?

The following are the effects of the Fifa sanctions:

n All Zimbabwean football clubs will not be allowed to play or participate in international competitions.

n Zimbabwean players will not be marketable in the more professional and lucrative leagues since most teams look at the country’s rankings before engaging players. One might argue that all the same Zimbabwe is already poorly ranked but it’s better than effects of the ban.

n Zimbabwean players already in overseas professional leagues like Knowledge Musona,  Quincy Antipas, to name but a few, will lose status and consequently be demoted to lower teams.

n All junior players under the age of 20 will be demoralised with a lengthy ban as their chances of playing abroad will be diminished with age.

n Zimbabwean referees who of late had been favoured to officiate at international tournaments will not be spared by this catastrophe as they will be overlooked due to the inactivity of our teams in professional tournaments

The minister’s action flies in the face of efforts by the government to create employment. Football plays an important role in the creation of employment and the Fifa ban will further compound the unemployment crisis.

Therefore, as supporters who are duly recognised by Fifa as important stakeholders in football, we must raise concerns with the Fifa President Sepp Blatter so that he intervenes to safeguard the interests of the future generation.

The supporters believe the deputy minister of Sport should be an impartial intermediary, because being the link between the Government and Zifa she is supposed to represent mutual interests.

Every one celebrated the creation of a parent Sports ministry as this gave hope of government funding into sport but we have continued to witness poverty in Sports which points to negligence on the part of those responsible for engaging the government to act.

The minister’s examples of countries that have interfered in football by dissolving football associations lack substance. A closer look at those countries show that they acted in such a manner because they pour resources into sport, therefore they demand results because there will be no genuine excuse for failure. As for Zimbabwe, it is like a father demanding good results from his children when he does not pay their school fees.

Finally, any one supporting government’s interference in football is treasonous. Let us all go back to the drawing board and explore other means of improving Zimbabwean football.

George Smith


Comments (12)

As government, what are they doing in order to fund ZIFA? The police & sports council have been milking football in Zim. As Gvt , you really need to look into the economy before the whole country ZANU supporters included call for a nation wide strike. Which arm of Gvt is performing? Siyayi Dube ne soccer . We don't want sanctions on sports. If Zim is suspended, we will hold you (deputy minister) responsible. Please concentrate on the purge within your party. Are you weevils or Gamatox ?

Not Amused - 1 February 2015

I, personnally, and many right-minded people out there strongly support the Minister to disolve and fire all the Zifa staff, that is Cuthbert and the CEO today, 02/02/2015. We are sick and tired of this dead organisation called ZIFA. Let FIFA ban us from football whatever period. But What I know for sure is that when FIFA admits us back we will be a great footballing nation for many decades to come. Let us scarifice the current players for the good of the new generation. At least we will emerge a formidable soccer powerhouse rather than to remain in the dustbin of soccer. There are always sacrifices if one is to get the best. People who do not sacrifice in their lives never succeed. Look around you and see everyone who has made it has sacrificed. After all, If you sacrifice 3 or so players now the nation is going to produce more than 2 great teams that will be plying at international arena. Take my words. After dissolving the ZIFA and we are banned by FIFA, it is time for us to collect ourselves, team up and work day and night to build back the footballing nation we used to be. I urge Government to pour in $millions into the development of football. This must happen after the firing of Cuthbert and his CEO. The banning by FIFA is not forever, we will bounce back in a new lease of life. Cuthbert and Mashingaidze and team must go!

Prof JKumusha - 2 February 2015

I am trying to read between the lines to understand the crime Cuthbert Dube committed. Football was brought down by the Asiagate period when Dube was not there and as he tries to clean it the "Asiagaters" start to attack him. The economy is struggling and every sport as a result is struggling to get funding from the Corporate sector and Govt. Sport, including football requires money to function and when there is no money its difficult to get results. You cant get results when players go on strike before playing a match, icluding cricketers. All signs point to the economy and not Dube. After Asiagate, there was never again a national team and he is only trying to rebuild, without government and Corporate support. Zvinhu zvakangooma mazuvano guys.

The great - 2 February 2015

its high tym we deal with zifa once and for all, we dont need u zifa, lets do this for the future. there will be no consequences coz we know that we will neva qualify with the status quo, lets just do away with these posh car drivers who benefit from the tears of zimbabwean supporters

thinktank - 2 February 2015

This is a well written piece and supported with facts. People have to remember that it does not mean that once banned for 5 years then Zimbabwe will be automatically re-admitted by FIFA. The ban has far more damages ranging from loss of funds, competitiveness and at the end the country will lose more. So far how much money did the Govt. put in ZIFA to ensure that they are well funded?? So if Dube and TEAM goes what next??

Lizwe Mketiwa - 2 February 2015

Destroying is always easy but building is never easy the Lady Minister should never be emotional, Dube was equally wrong in being ruthless when dealing with asiagate culprits now its his turn to be dealt with, my point is Zifa must take stock of its failures so is the Sport Ministry, they must fund football period where is their moral responsibility if they not even in a position to pay salaries of the National Couch his deputies and Zifa itself and other National sports bodies non. So please Minister thick don't destroy the little that is there built on it , nature it, give it the motherly approach don't look at Dube (we all know him) himself as an individual, reconsider. Should you think is not competent then increase your supervisory roles.

jose - 2 February 2015

Asiagate scandal sidelined forever,Heneritta goes scot- free, all these are criminal acts which need cleansing. The Cuthbert-ZIFA is a far bigger issue for the junior minister to handle, its unlike the Kongonya dance. You failed to nail Cuthbert on the scandalous PSMAS salary where a shred of evidence exist. Please not all of US ARE BORN FREES.

Mukanya - 2 February 2015

the problem with Zim ,is that there are many problems in every department .Asiagate was left like that with all the evidence clear but, because Henriater is a Zanupf candidate nothing was done to her to the extent of her, fighting to be re-instated .today this one comes and say Zifa must be dissolved and some silly folks are supporting that .this junior minister was also given that job on corruption bases so where are we really going as a country nowhere

mr honest - 2 February 2015

musaite zvema emotions minister which sport is perfoming well in zim even vekumhanya zvirikuramba simba anoriwanepi iye ararira nhoko, its all about the ecomomy , otherwise fire all sports leaders in this country,

muchaka - 2 February 2015

leave dube alone to complete his term of office. this is a problem of the whole economy which has crumbled. government is putting nothing in soccer. Put your mouth where your money is, or shut up period.

mabhunu muchapera - 3 February 2015

My worry is that the author thinks that if the govt pours the tax payer's money into ZIFA, things will be well. Vamunyori, are you listening to yourself? You mean our hard earned $s must be pumped into ZIFA where money cannot be accounted for. Vanenge vachipenga. What the deputy minister did was logical. She brought her idea to develop football, lets not brush her aside as if there is no substance in what she is saying. The best we can talk about is to develop her idea, for at least someone in govt has voiced a concern, a lady for that matter. Did you read Tapiwa Matangaidze's letter in today's Herald over the same issue. Thats what I call thinking. When you bring up an idea to the public, its subject to scrutiny. In as much as you think she was short sighted, she received wild cheers from MPs and fellow ministers. I think lets have a smarter way of getting the guys out. They have failed and shame on those who voted him into power. They were so naive to think that he would turn things around. Can you trust Cuthbert with cash. Munotamba imi

jore - 4 February 2015

vanha varikutaurisa kunge vanoda bhora ndovakadya mari ye asia gate. Dube adiii? Manje haandi.

mutambanengwe - 6 February 2015

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