HARARE – Zimbabwe’s, under the oversight of new Sports Minister Raymond Kazembe, is working to put the sport’s finances on a more solid footing, with an extraordinary general meeting of ZIFA having been arranged and a new sponsorship for key teams in the offing. Meanwhile it has emerged ZIFA President Philip Chiyangwa earned $72,000 in 2017 from renting out his offices to the association.
Controversy has arisen over an EGM of ZIFA set for January 20 which will discuss financial matters usually discussed at an AGM.
A Harare City Football Club media and liaison officer asking “Why then is Zifa in a hurry to discuss matters already on the agenda for the AGM?” Then answering his own question, saying: “It is simple. First, the term for the current executive ends on March 30 and critically FIFA requires by end of January, financial reports for 2017 for member associations to be able to access funds. So, for ZIFA to wait until February 20 would mean they would have missed the January deadline to be considered for financial relief.”
The Harare City club official then asked another rhetorical question: “So, we will again ask, what is more important for Zimbabwe… financial relief or constitutional compliance?”
Better news seems to be in the offing as mobile communications giant NetOne looks set to release funding for Zimbabwean football’s biggest clubs – Dynamos, Highlanders and Caps within the next few weeks.
Each club is expected to receive $300 000 for salaries and for signing-on fees for their players for the 2018 season, although it does not appear negotiations have been finalised.
Local media have revealed that ZIFA’s latest audited financial results show Chiyangwa, earned $72 000 in 2017 by renting out his offices to the association under the terms of a deal which was signed when ZIFA engineered an escape from its creditors by moving offices. Under the terms of the new office rental deal Chiyangwa’s company is expected to benefit to the tune of $420 000 over the period of the contract form 2016-2021.
A good deal for the FA president in a football economy where players are unpaid and the government is having to step in to stabilise finances.