No joy for Rovers

The Manica Post - - Front Page - Ray Bande Se­nior Sports Re­porter

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.

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