No joy for Rovers
STRUGGLING Mutare City Rovers will host champions FC Platinum at Vengere Stadium on Saturday (tomorrow) at a time when members of their club executive are entangled in a protracted battle for control of the team, Post Sport can reveal. Manicaland’s flagship football outfit, which will travel to Bulawayo on May Day holiday for a date against high ridding Highlanders, has only managed to amass a paltry five points after seven rounds of league matches and the animosity prevailing in their executive is the least the team would have wanted at this time.
With a total of eight politically elected councillors, the heavily bloated Mutare City Rovers FC executive comprises of chairman councillor Kudakwashe Chisango, vice chairman councillor Shepherd Jojo, second vice-chairman Tanda Rwambiwa, executive councillors Edison Kalulu, Pamela Mutare, Tsitsi Ziweya, Tarwirei Mabika, one Bhiza, one Nyamhoka. There is also chief of protocol Benjamin Chindima, spokesperson Clayton Masekesa, secretary general Soul Tomu, treasurer Golden Mahlanza, team doctor Prudence Mhlanga, welfare manager Pardon Mugabe, administrator Samson Kabwe and transport and logistics officer Eddie Gopo, as part of the same executive.
As if that was enough, Mutare City Rovers executive also has committee members Brian Mukunga, Ellen Mandiopera and Hatinzwani Kubuya.
And today, there are fissures in the Mutare City Rovers leadership with the politically elected city councillors on one side and other members on the other, while councillors on their own are also divided over the post of chairman.
Accusations and counter accusations have become the order of the day in the bloated executive and the situation deteriorated late last week when some members of the executive went to have a meeting with Town Clerk Joshua Maligwa, a gathering that councillors chose to snub.
Councillors retaliated by unofficially announcing the ouster of Masekesa and Bhadela from the executive.
Ideally, councillors, who are in office owing to their political success during the country’s previous general elections, are part of the Mutare City Rovers FC executive not because of their knowledge in running the affairs of a football club but simply because of the unwritten law that if councillors are sidelined in the team management, using their routine full council meetings, they would resolve to dissolve the club as an unnecessary expense for the local authority.
The benefit in allowances that come with the councillors’ participation in football team management matters seems to be what keeps the eight politicians in the executive.
This explains the plundering of club resources exemplified by the trip to Nyamhunga Stadium early this year by some councillors to see areas they would need to improve at Sakubva - a sheer waste of resources for the club that yielded nothing as Sakubva Stadium was later condemned.
Bhadela confirmed that there is acrimony within the executive.
“I think it was emotional. We have not yet sat down to discuss the matter. You can talk to Masekesa, we were together. He is the one with detail,” said Bhadela.
Masekesa also confirmed that there were issues related to “warring” parties.
“We had a special meeting. It was a closed door meeting where the execu- tive members attended to discuss the warring issues on the ground. It was amicably resolved that the members bury the differences and unite.
“The councillors will remain as the custodians of the team and will work hand in hand with the executive members to properly administer the operations of the team.
“The meeting also created a strong bond between the councillors and the executive members in regard of executing football duties the will result in the smooth flow of the game of football within the club. What we want is to build a football team that we are all proud of as people of Manicaland.
“The meeting perfectly ironed out differences and impediments that were grossly affecting the smooth operations of the team. We are now glad that the meeting opened up new football minds that we expect will change the game of football for the better,” he said.
Mutare City Rovers chairman councillor Chisango was not reachable for comment as his mobile repeatedly went unanswered.
HOUSE ON FIRE . . . Members of the Mutare City Rovers are fighting over the control of the club while the team has been struggling to produce results on the field of play.