‘All points to a Banda victory’
FIRSTLY, it’s important to make it clear that Gift Banda is not entering this election to fight personalities but to try and improve our football.
Being a former Premier Soccer League club boss and a former Zifa board member, I have noticed quite a number of anomalies in the way our football is being run. But we have to give kudos to incumbent president Philip Chiyangwa. He has done a great job if you look at how our national team has performed. But there are a lot of shortcomings. The Premier Soccer League clubs have been mistreated, the constitution continues to be violated and junior football is virtually dead. Women’s football no longer gets funding and yet during the Cuthbert Dube era, part of the Fifa grants would cascade down to the grassroots.
This is something that we thought this new administration led by Chiyangwa would continue doing but they haven’t. It’s sad because the girl child has suffered despite the Mighty Warriors having been a flag bearer in recent years.
PSL clubs are reeling financially and have become a victim of the Caf Club Licensing system.
A resolution was made for PSL clubs to get Caf A Licensed coaches and yet Zifa has done nothing to facilitate the courses.
It means some PSL clubs end up being forced to pay two coaches at once, pay their coach without a Caf A License but with a three or five-year contract and then pay a new recruit with the requisite papers.
We need to put enabling policies and not push for policies that leave our clubs drained. We have to assist our clubs to run profitably and meet Fifa requirements.
I was the youngest club owner at Njube Sundowns, which ran in the top flight from 1996 to 2009.
I understand what it means to run a PSL club, what it means for clubs involved in grassroots and need support financially so that they continue to churn out talent year after year.
As much as we might celebrate the achievements by the Warriors, we need to think of tomorrow. We have brilliant players in the national team but after they are gone, what’s next? Do we have a sound feeder system? I believe we don’t. Where are our junior teams? They are not there. Where are our junior leagues? They are dormant.
Why am l so passionate about junior football? Because I am one of the very few people who gave juniors an opportunity when I was Njube Sundowns boss.
The likes of Thabani Kamusoko, Eddie Mashiri, Samson Choruwa, Sageby Sandaka, Stanford Ncube came through our ranks. That’s where I want to come in and make an impact and use my expertise to revive junior football development. I have decided to come in because to me, football is a calling. Regardless of how much you want to just go and sit in the stands and watch, football will always call you back. I feel sad about the current situation where clubs keep on recycling old players.
Nowadays we are more results driven, which in the long run kills our football. I am moving alone, I don’t want a pact. If people go into Zifa as a pact, they don’t correct each other when things go wrong because they are friends. We should not go there carrying each other, everyone should be on his own, sell whatever idea they have of improving football to the councilors on their own. I have been talking to the councilors, they now have my manifesto and from what I am getting, all is pointing to a victory for Gift Banda.
Which brings me to another issue — the councilors. Have we treated them to the best of our abilities? Have they been accorded their status as the owners of this game? The answer is no. When the councilors go to the National Sports Stadium to watch the Warriors, they struggle to gain entrance. These are the parliamentarians of our football but they are not being recognized properly.
Yet you find close friends of administrators and hangers-on packed in the VVIP section for free. Those are smaller things that do not require any money but require football minds.
I sat down and looked at the media, which I believe should always remind administrators of where we are going wrong so that we improve.
Once the media stops its oversight role, it then makes us sit on our laurels . Media must keep us on our toes so that we deliver what we promise in our manifestos.
Zifa needs to equip football writers by exposing them to international trends.
The Zifa constitution continues to be violated. You saw how the run up to this election was handled by the electoral committee. We need to have a legitimate electoral committee known and recognized by the Assembly.
I also feel there’s need to push for rebates and incentives for companies that support football because they are helping from the game. If football is taken care of, with the support of Government, we can really go far. But we are still lagging behind. The good thing is we have a real sports-person, Kirsty Coventry, at the helm of the Sports Ministry and this should
help us going forward.
“It’s normal for Simba (Chinani) to attract such interest given his performances at Dynamos in the second half of the season,” said Ushendibaba.
Described by DeMbare coach Chigove as a shining star before getting a rare endorsement from assistant gaffer Murape Murape, Chinani has slowly convinced pundits he could be Dynamos’ next big find after Tatenda Mkuruva, who is now based in Zambia.
“I am aware people are starting to compare me with Mkuruva but I haven’t reached those levels yet. Mkuruva is one of my idols and I still have a lot to do before I reach his level.
“I have to work hard, especially on my ball distribution and footwork,” said Chinani.
Gift Banda Gift Banda, who is vying for the Zifa vice presidency post against incumbent Omega Sibanda, spoketoThe Sunday Mail SportReporter Langton Nyakwenda in Harare last week.