Chiyangwa In, Benjani Out

IT’S going to be a three-man race for the ZIFA presidency, with Trevor Carelse-Juul, a former leader of domestic football, Harare businessman Philip Chiyangwa, and ex-Premier Soccer League secretary-general Leslie Gwindi fighting for the post.

Carelse-Juul and Gwindi battled in the last ZIFA elections, for the same post, and lost to Cuthbert Dube. Gwindi, a former Dynamos secretary-general, will be battling for the presidency for the third straight time after losing in 2010 and 2014. The ZIFA Electoral Committee will meet in Harare tomorrow to decide which candidates fit the bill to run in the elections.

Carelse-Juul might find his candidature being thrown out on the basis that the new ZIFA Constitution, which was drafted after the last elections, does not allow someone who has not been resident in this country to be part of the board.The businessman has been staying in South Africa since the turn of the millennium.

Item four of Article 32 in the ZIFA constitution states that “the members of the executive committee shall have already been in active football administration for, at least, five years, must not have been previously found guilty of a criminal offence under national criminal law and have residency within the territory of ZIFA.”

Ten nomination forms were picked for the president’s post, but only three were confirmed to have been returned yesterday when nominations closed. ZIFA chief executive Jonathan Mashingaidze confirmed yesterday receiving forms from Chiyangwa, Gwindi and Trevor Carelse-Juul.

Mashingaidze said they were still waiting for the other forms to come in from their respective offices outside Harare by late yesterday.

For the vice-president’s post, five nomination papers were picked and by yesterday, former Dynamos chairman Lincoln Mutasa, former ZIFA vice-president Omega Sibanda and veteran administrator Elkhana Dube, had submitted their forms.

Seven submissions were confirmed to have been returned for the four executive committee members from the 12 nomination forms picked.

Former referee Wilfred Mukuna, beach soccer chairperson Joseph Musariri, CAPS United board chairperson and lawyer Lewis Uriri, Eastern Region chairperson Piraishe Mabhena and Southern Region chairperson Mussa Mandaza are part of those whose papers were in by late yesterday.

They were joined by former Lengthens director and Harare City councillor Beadle Mussa Gwasira, former Division One club owner Jackson Munyaka, who owned Power Master and former Shooting Stars chairman, Lewis Matindife.

The fact that Uriri is the only lawyer in the running, it could give him an edge given that the board needs one of the members to have a legal background, and his candidature was backed by both Dynamos and CAPS United. Mashingaidze said the ZIFA Electoral Committee, headed by Justice Sello Nare, will have a meeting tomorrow at Cresta Oasis to verify the candidature of those that would have submitted their forms.

Take note forms went to 10 provincial offices, four regions, PSL and the head office. And in terms of returns they should all be in tomorrow (today) because today (yesterday) was the closing day. “A person who did not submit should count themselves out of the race. “The Electoral Committee will meet on Saturday at 14:30hrs and the purpose of the meeting is to verify the candidatures.

“On Saturday if there is anyone disqualified they have up to the 12th (of November) to appeal, starting from the 9th (of November) through the relevant board. “Once they have done that the Electoral Committee will hear the appeal. “If there is no appeal the Electoral Committee will on the 15th (of November) publish the final list for the position of president, vice-president and the four executive members.

“Then once that is done there will be no additions and it will be given to the Electoral College made up of 58 delegates and those will vote on December 5,” said Mashingaidze.

Mashingaidze said they have moved the meeting from 9am to 2:30pm because of the burial of Zimbabwe football legend Paul Gundani set for Kwekwe tomorrow.

CAPS United president, Farai Jere, who is backing Chiyangwa, was one of the football administrators who were in Kwekwe yesterday to pay their respects and gave the Gundani family $500 donated by the ZIFA presidential candidate. Mashingaidze said only those in good standing with the national football association will vote on December 5 and those that have not paid their annual levies have been given up to November 13 to pay.

Although the verification is yet to be done, Chiyangwa, was the only candidate who held a media conference yesterday and said he already had about 43 votes in his bag. “I am holding 43 votes for crying out loud to the 58 people, whoever is giving competition I don’t know how they are going to do it but I have 43 votes,” said Chiyangwa. Chiyangwa also released his manifesto dubbed “The Twelve Points of Light” in which most of the issues raised are to do with the welfare of national team players, clearance of the ZIFA debt, restoration of constitutional democracy, accountability and transparency in the administration of ZIFA.

“As I have already promised we want to revolutionarise the game and bring about a much more exciting period of this much loved game. “Among the other things that I have already said is that we are in to assist in extinguishing the ZIFA debt which is $6 000 000.

“We are further in there to ensure that the players are remunerated on time or paid in time. We want also to see that workers at ZIFA are well remunerated.

“We are also in there to promote women soccer and ensure that it is well funded and that there are no issues about their salaries. “We also want to ensure that beach soccer is recognised. The five-aside soccer is not recognised because very little is said about these other sides and they are all business. We want to ensure that they are recognised,” Chiyangwa said.

His nomination papers were signed by the four regional bosses — Mussa Mandaza (Southern Region), Felton Kamambo (Central Region), Willard Manyengavana (Northern Region) and Piraishe Mabhena (Eastern Region).

Source The Herald

Tongai Mwenje

Tongai Mwenje is a Senior Editor with Zimbabwe's largest online sports magazine Sportbrief He has been writing professionally since 2012 and currently writes for technology and sport blogs. He has vast experience in digital marketing, sports reporting and analysis. He is also a Sports and Technology columnist with Financial Gazette Online Sports Column and Technology Magazine respectively.

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