Munyati makes his big move

Robson Sharuko Senior Sports Editor
ZIFA board member Nigel Munyati has thrown his name into the hat to challenge for the association’s presidency saying the outgoing leadership was a gigantic failure that let down both the game and a nation that is madly in love with its football.
The Aces Youth Soccer Academy founder/director, who was part of the outgoing Zifa board, said while individuals on the board might have excelled, the board lacked leadership and will be remembered as a failed project.

Munyati, who was in charge of marketing, revealed that his board somehow refused to sign a deal with Germany sportswear firm, Puma, which had the Fifa support, even though it could have earned the Association about US$500 000 a year.

He claimed that money was being used to buy patronage of some people in the game but said he was confident that his vision will win him votes because people wanted four years of success and that needed visionary leadership.

“The outgoing Zifa Board has been a failure. While in our individual capacities we may have performed to differing levels of effectiveness, the net result is that we have failed the nation and our beautiful game. The main reason for this failure has been poor leadership,” Munyati says in his election manifesto.

“Our Board failed to focus on instituting a strategic approach to managing the glaring needs and requisite and key success factors such as cleansing the Association’s image, financial rescue and prudent financial management, professionalisation of the Secretariat, implementation of a Junior Football Development programme, and securing a technical partnership for the national team kit and equipment.

Zimbabwe Football
“Instead we wasted precious time on pursuing issues of peripheral importance, such as cleansing the Secretariat of the old staff, and suspending Board Members considered disruptive to some individuals’ private agendas.

“Our Board was fraught with cancer characterised by indecisiveness, acrimonious infighting, and blindness, which cost the association dearly.”
Munyati says he could have made a bigger difference, if he was empowered with the executive authority that comes with being the Zifa president, in the past four years and he is asking the football family to give him that chance.

“Some of the values I will institute include — Strategic Thinking and Action, Decisiveness, Consistency, Honesty, and Fairness,” Munyati, who has played and administered the game, said.

“I am a full-time football administrator with a lifetime of passionate experience and expertise. I am running for the post of Zifa President and promise to bring Zimbabwe Football a passionate combination of skill, experience, dedication, and professionalism.

“Sport is a fundamental ingredient to a nation’s health, as it can help instil a sense of national pride and galvanise it in times of difficulty. Zimbabwe needs football. Our nation has endured a very challenging decade-and-a-half of political discord and economic strife that have left us with a low sense of personal and national esteem. I promise to play my part in redeeming the national soul through football.”

Other areas that Munyati wants to address, if elected into office, include:
Professionalisation of the Association
The Secretariat has perennially underperformed and this has severely compromised the Association’s ability to deliver on its mandate. Creating an effective organisational structure and employing a team of competent staff supported by a firm but fair implementation of effective policies and procedures will be a top priority.

Professionalisation will also include:
(i) Staff Contracts — All Zifa employees will be placed on annual contracts to ensure that numbers are commensurate with Association funding and that retention is based on performance.

(ii) Decentralisation — To ensure that administrative support is more effective, I will encourage the Board/Council to introduce a structure that has two conferences; the Northern (Harare-based) and Southern (Byo-based) Conferences, each with a General Manager.

(iii) Engagement of Technical Partner/Kit Supplier — Despite the Puma deal receiving Fifa support, the last Board refused to sign the contract, denying the Association an opportunity to earn a minimum of US$500 000/year in replica sales. I will make the engagement of a Technical Partner/Kit Supplier to dress and equip all national teams one of the first actions of the new Board.
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