Approach Zifa for fees reduction, PSL clubs urged
PREMIER Soccer League teams have a better chance of successfully lobbying the police and local authorities to reduce service charges if they go through Zifa.
Zifa Southern Region’s Tumediso Mokoena feels the national association is in a better position to deal with the topflight clubs’ pleas.
Mokoena said he wondered why clubs don’t table the issue before the Zifa Assembly so that it is dealt with at a higher level.
PSL clubs have been crying foul over charges by the police for security and stadium rentals charged by local authorities, complaining that they are the two biggest expenses eating into their gate takings revenue, which most clubs survive on.
“I wonder why PSL clubs are quiet about these expenses when they are troubled by them. We know charges for stadium rentals and the police are negatively affecting them, but they are not tabling the issue at the Zifa Assembly so that we approach line ministries and deal with it at a higher level,” said Mokoena.
“We have only seen reports in the media, but nothing has come to Zifa, which I believe can effectively deal with the issue. Teams are struggling and they can do well with reduced charges.”
Teams in Harare got a reprieve after the Harare City Council reduced rates from 20 percent to 15 percent of gross stadium gate takings, while the Bulawayo City Council has rejected several requests from Highlanders to lower charges. Police are paid per hour, with the amount dependant on one’s rank, hence charges vary depending on the profile and security risk of the match.
In a high profile match between Highlanders and Dynamos played on September 11 at Barbourfields, Bosso grossed $44 859, but BCC received the biggest chunk of $8 971.80, while the police got $2 775.30.
After all match day expenses, including statutory levies for Zifa, the Sports and Recreation Commission and PSL had been deducted, the club was left with $20 185.
Most local clubs use local authority stadiums. Clubs have been complaining that despite being the main attraction to soccer matches, service providers and levies eat into the better part of their income, which they heavily rely on for match preparation and paying their players.
Mokoena said it was unfortunate local clubs were struggling to turn professional and earn all their cash from football.
“I think we are still operating at a social level because you find clubs in other countries such as South Africa playing in empty stadiums, but teams make their money. Here we are still reliant on gate takings,” he said.