Ndebele denies Zifa allegations

HARARE - Premier Soccer League (PSL) chief executive Kenny Ndebele has denied allegations levelled against him that he is causing the breakdown in relations between the league and the Zimbabwe Football Association (Zifa).

Zifa president Philip Chiyangwa has instructed acting PSL chairperson Kenni Mubaiwa to open disciplinary proceedings against Ndebele for orchestrating the clubs’ refusal to accept the proposal to relegate four teams and promote four into the top flight league.

Initially, the PSL was supposed to drop two teams at the end of this season while the four champions from Division One leagues would play in a play-off to determine the two teams going up.

However, during a Zifa Annual General Meeting at the end of October, councillors voted against that plan and since then the two football bodies have been at each other’s throat.

Ndebele, who has been in mainstream football administration for the past 15 years, feels a certain character within the Zifa corridors of power has got a personal vendetta against him.

“I’m surprised that I’m being accused of trying to jeopardise the relationship between the league and Zifa,” Ndebele told the Daily News yesterday.

“Then again, this news comes as no surprise to me because I have seen it coming. There is a certain individual within Zifa who has told everyone who cares to listen that they are going to get rid of me.

“Even if you meet this person in a bar, a supermarket, a bus stop or anywhere you can think of; all he will be talking about is they want to chase me out of football.

“My differences with this person dates to 2003 and 2004. Since then, they have always tried to make sure I do not have anything to do with local football.”

Ndebele said he will leave the PSL only if the clubs deem it fit since they are his bosses not Zifa.

“I’m an employee of the PSL clubs in terms of Article 47 of the constitution and my appointment is governed by private law not the Zifa constitution,” he said.

“My responsibility is to implement decisions passed by the board of governors. You remember that in June I was requested to work at Nafaz and I had accepted that offer.

“The reason I had accepted that offer was because I wanted to foster the relations between the PSL and Nafaz. So how can I completely turn around and try to ruin that relationship in the last three months?”

Ndebele said in almost two decades in the football administration he had enjoyed cordial working relations with former Zifa and PSL leaders like Leo Mugabe, Rafik Khan, Vincent Pamire, Wellington Nyatanga, Cuthbert Dube and Tapiwa Matangaidze.

The PSL boss said in all these years he had never tried to destabilise the status quo in the local game like what Chiyangwa is alleging now.

In a letter sent to Mubaiwa, Chiyangwa said: “You are required to interview and compile a report on the conduct of one.. . . . Ndebele, particularly the manner he has fostered and sponsored a breakdown of relationships between Zifa and the PSL members in violation of the Zifa constitution.

“You are therefore required to produce a report of his responses, in his presence, before the Zifa president at 2pm on the 16th of December 2016.”

Chiyangwa also requested Mubaiwa, who is the Dynamos president, to conduct a review of the PSL constitution which complies with that of Zifa.

Mubaiwa was also mandated to look for sponsorship for the league which will be vetted first by Zifa.

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