HomeOpinion & AnalysisYoung Warriors’ botched trip, who is to blame?

Young Warriors’ botched trip, who is to blame?

Brian Nkiwane

A lot has been happening in local football following the Young Warriors’ failure to travel to Angola for the second leg of the Africa Youth Championships.
A war of words erupted between ministries and other responsible authorities as fans demanded answers as to why the team failed to travel for the second leg of the African Youth Championship match against Angola after they had played the first leg at home and lost 1-0 to the visitors.

 
The technical team, led by Jairos Tapera, was confident of overturning the score in Angola, had they travelled. but due to their failure, the country now risks being penalised by CAF.

 
To start with, all the responsible ministries and associations should shoulder the blame because they should have ensured the team fulfilled its fixture.
The Ministry of Education, Sport, Arts and Culture, led by Senator David Coltart, should now take Zifa head-on over this issue.

 
The ministry, which does not get any percentage from all registered sporting associations, recently paid US$90 000 from precious Education Ministry Funds to Pandhari Lodge as they bailed out Zifa.

 
Coltart also said his ministry was allocated only US$5 million to fund the country’s 8 000 schools and all sporting disciplines, which is too little. In this case the ministry has no question to answer.

 
The Sports and Recreation Commission (SRC), which happens to be the supreme sports controlling body in this country, was supposed to do something as well as taking into consideration that these associations fall under the commission.

 
SRC is entitled to 6% of gate takings at any Zifa match, which is a lot of money. They should have made an effort to see to it that the Young Warriors fulfilled the fixture. SRC should shoulder the blame.

 
Zifa, itself, has for a long time been broke and everyone knows that Cuthbert Dube has been running the association with his money.

 
All the expenses, even Zifa employees’ salaries, have been coming from the Zifa boss as the association has no money at all.

 
But I don’t think this is the right way of doing it. Zifa must be a self-sustaining organisation, taking into consideration the Warriors brand. Once again, Zifa should join SRC in shouldering the blame.

 
Now, we are set to be hit by heavy fines for not fulfilling this fixture. The million dollar question is: who is going to meet those hefty fines, after we failed to pay reasonable ticket fares for our Young Warriors to go to Angola?

 
Can the government, through the Ministry of Education, Sport, Arts and Culture and SRC intervene before the situation goes beyond control.
I cannot foresee a situation whereby Minister Coltart can say Dube has snubbed him for a long time. It’s high time they meet, sit on a round table and chat the way forward.

For feedback and comments email bnkiwane@standard.co.zw or call 0775 341 029

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