HARARE - Twine Phiri’s hopes of being re-instated as Premier Soccer League chairman faced further resistance yesterday after Zifa president Philip Chiyangwa insisted Phiri could not represent CAPS United on the Zifa board because he is no longer the club chairman.
This comes as CAPS had backed Phiri who is now part of the non-executive presidium in his new position as vice-president to continue with his representation on the PSL board of governors.
CAPS United chairman Lewis Uriri on Monday wrote to PSL chief executive Kenny Ndebele reiterating that Phiri remains their representative on the PSL board of governors.
“The executive, which is headed by chief executive officer, is under the immediate leadership of a management committee (the Executive Committee. Twine Phiri is, by resolution of the Board of Directors, the Chairman of the Executive Committee and reports to the Board, a position he has held without interruption,” wrote Uriri.
“Twine Ibrahim Phiri, remains the CAPS United FC representative on the Zimbabwe Premier Soccer League Board of Governors. Our Board of Directors has not made any resolution contrary to our last communicated position. In the event of any changes, your good offices will be notified in writing in the ordinary course.
“We reiterate that there’s presently no intention to recall Mr Phiri from his position as our Governor on the ZPSL Board of Governors.”
The Chiyangwa-led Zifa board ordered the PSL to hold fresh elections arguing that Phiri was part of the previous Zifa board whose mandate was revoked by councillors in October last year.
But during a Zifa/PSL familiarisation meeting in the capital last week, the majority of PSL partners said they were happy with the leadership of Phiri whose tenure of office was supposed to run until 2018.
However, Zifa went against the Premiership clubs and suspended Phiri, replacing him with Highlanders chairman Peter Dube who is now the acting PSL chairman.
Clairwood Chambers legal practitioner, Itayi Ndudzo one of the lawyers representing Chiyangwa said Phiri had no locus standi to represent CAPS United adding that only current chairman Lewis Uriri can do so.
“Mr Uriri represents and confirms himself as the exclusive chairman of CAPS United Football Club.
“It is critical to state that the exclusive member of Zifa and the PSL is CAPS United Football Club the entity chaired by Mr Uriri. Any other internal body, committee, branch, element or structure within the football club itself is of no relevance, concern and consequence to Zifa and its affiliate the PSL,” said Ndudzo.
“Therefore that Mr Uriri mentions the existence of a “presidium” and “executive committee” within his football club cannot circumvent the self-evident fact that he is the exclusive chairman of the football club which is the only recognised and registered member of Zifa.
“CAPS Football Club like any other football club can have all sorts of internal committees and style them whichever way it desires.
“However, it must be noted that the Football Statutes only speak of the chairman of the football club itself as eligible for serving as a governor.
“There is no room whatsoever for the chairman of a workers committee, supporters committee, players committee, ‘executive committee’ or any other committee of the club however, styled and constituted to gate crush representation of the football club.”
“As a matter of incontrovertible fact the same Lewis Uriri in his capacity as chairman of CAPS United football club participated in the elective congress of December 5, 2015.
“The validity and credibility of his vote entirely hinged on his exclusive qualification and representation as the sole chairman of the member of Zifa. It will certainly be scandalous for the same Mr Uriri to now summersault and present Mr Phiri as the club’s representative to the PSL.
“He cannot be allowed to approbate and reprobate without inviting sanctions for his club if not for himself. Suffice to mention is that
“Mr Uriri cannot be allowed to author confusion by shifting goalposts for the convenience of Mr Phiri in the face of unambiguous and unequivocal provisions of football statutes.”