Four eye Zifa presidency

Petros Kausiyo Deputy Sports Editor
EXACTLY 21 years after he was suspended from football, former Zifa chairman Trevor Carelse-Juul wants to bounce back into mainstream administration and yesterday entered the race for the association’s presidency ahead of the March 29 elections.
Carelse-Juul was a surprise entry in the race for the Zifa presidency yesterday and will, together with current board Nigel Munyati and Harare City chairman Leslie Gwindi challenge incumbent Cuthbert Dube for the right to lead the association for the next four years.

The arrivals of Carelse-Juul and Munyati onto the scene will ensure that the 2014 Zifa elections will not be a repeat of the 2010 edition which was a two-horse race between eventual winner Dube and Gwindi.

There were also only two contestants for the vice-president’s post at the close of nominations at 53 Livingstone Avenue in Harare yesterday with former Highlanders vice-chairman Elkana Dube set to battle it out against football agents’ leader Omega Sibanda.

Cuthbert Dube
Despite his name being linked with the Zifa elections, former Arcadia United striker Charlie Jones will not take part in any of the polls.
An interesting scenario is, however, also beckoning among those vying to be board members with the pair of former Northern Region chairman Francis Zimunya and ex-Women’s boss Susan Chibizhe also seeking a return to the game.

The list of those seeking places as board members also includes current board member development John Phiri, Benedict “Grinder’’ Moyo, who holds the portfolio of board member competitions, and ZPC Kariba committee member Saidi Sangula.

Former Zifa board member, in charge of finance, Elliot Kasu, is out of the running.
But there is no doubting that it is businessman Carelse-Juul’s bid to return to the game, which was as much a surprise as it was a major talking point at the close of the nominations.

Mr Gwindi
Carelse-Juul stepped down from the Zifa chairman’s post following recommendations by the Sports Commission that his executive be barred from taking part in football administration after allegations that they were involved in maladministration.

The other members of that executive were vice-chairman Claude Zindoga, secretary-general John Nkathazo, treasurer Paul Timba, fixtures secretary Robson Rundaba, and committee member Abisha Mugwambi.

According to the report of the committee of inquiry into Zifa, Carelse-Juul’s executive’s failure to pay to the Sports Commission their levy constituted an infringement on the Sport and recreation Commission Act of 1991.

It was also revealed in the damming report that the executive members had paid themselves bonuses after Zimbabwe’s Warriors beat South Africa and Mauritius in the African Cup of Nations qualifiers in Harare and Curepipe in 1992.

Apart from paying themselves bonuses at a time when Zifa was reeling from financial constraints, certain members of the executive were accused of buying suits, ties and shoes at the association’s expense shortly before the Warriors’ clash against Bafana Bafana on the pretext that they wanted to look as smart as the South Africans.

The Warriors, then under the guidance of the late Reinhard Fabisch, trounced Bafana Bafana 4-1 at the National Sports Stadium.
Now 21 years on, Carelse-Juul, who was replaced by Leo Mugabe, has thrown his name in the hat and believes he deserves another chance to return to the helm of Zifa.

Munyati, who has been heading the marketing portfolio under the Dube leadership, also believes he should actually take over the mantle to drive the ship in the next four years and yesterday opted to challenge his current boss in the election.

After surviving the threat of a lengthy ban from football for allegedly bringing the game into disrepute, Gwindi confirmed his return to the trenches to square off against Dube once again.

Dube, who has preached the gospel of continuity, believes he has some unfinished business in his bid to drive to the game to better fortunes and wants a second term to complete his mission.

After years of managing players, Bulawayo businessman Sibanda is hoping to replace the retiring Ndumiso Gumede for the vice-presidency but he, too, will have to overcome the challenge of Elkana Dube, who has gained his administrative experience in the Bosso boardroom.
There is also an interesting line-up among those vying to be board members.

Perennial campaigner Zimunya will also take another crack at the Zifa board after losing a series of elections in his recent comeback bids while Chibizhe believes she has had enough time off the game to return a rejuvenated administrator.

After having a feel of what goes in the board when he was acting Northern Region chairman, Harare lawyer Sangula could get a substantive place on the national game’s leadership.

Sangula will contest with such familiar faces like that of former Warriors and Mighty Warriors coach Moyo, former Warriors centre back John Phiri and the pair of Zimunya and Chibizhe.

Interestingly, Sangula and Zimunya squared off in the Northern Region by-election, which also featured Douglas Chitongo of Dstv Rangers and the former had won the polls before the result was nullified for some alleged technicalities.
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