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Jere, Chagonda break rank as ZIFA board splits over suspension

ZIFA board members Farai Jere, Sugar Chagonda and Barbara Chikosi have broken rank with Felton Kamambo and other suspended board members.

The trio declined to be associated with an appeal filed by the suspended board members challenging the Sport and Recreation Commission’s decision to suspend them, allegedly on trumped up charges.

The now fragmented Kamambo led board, last week lodged an appeal with the Administrative Court which they then claimed had suspended the Sport and Recreation Commission’s suspension.

The SRC rubbished the claim, directing that the board remains suspended despite the appeal.

In a statement, the Kamambo camp said while they are convinced that their appeal suspended the SRC suspension they cannot, however, be involved in physical confrontation with the regulator (SRC).

“As such, the ZIFA Board advises the nation that, in order to avoid unnecessary drama, it shall for now take a back seat until guidance from FIFA has been received, full prosecution of the Admin Court appeal or as and when the SRC decides to obey the laws of the land, whichever will come first,” Kamambo’s camp said.

“In this particular instance, the Board will not therefore be further involved in the day to day running of the FA in order to avoid confrontational exchanges with the SRC. All plans therefore previously announced by the Board as requiring its actioning will for now be shelved as it has become practically impossible to implement same with the SRC’s continued interference and threats of “severe consequences” whatever this means,” the camp continued.

“The ZIFA Board members have been subjected to continuous persecution over its 3-year tenure at the hands of the SRC, including false criminal police reports and the Board has reasons to believe that the said “severe consequences” include but are not limited to possible malicious persecution such as arbitral and malicious arrests should the Board continue exercising its valid and legal mandate as given by the ZIFA council.”

“It is our hope that those in charge of this predicament know what they are doing and as the ZIFA Board we sincerely hope such distractions by the SRC coined as an attempt to help football will not take the country many steps backwards regarding the state of football in Zimbabwe. All decisions by the SRC on football currently or in future, are therefore tantamount to interference in the affairs of football administration.”

The Kamambo camp said they had noted that three of the seven board members had simingly sided with the SRC despite the risk of FIFA sanctions on Zimbabwe’s football.

“The Board wishes to inform that 3 of its 7 Board Members, namely Mr Farai Jere, Mr Sugar Chagonda and Ms Barbara Chikosi have opted not to appeal the SRC decision. The Board is however still awaiting feedback from the 3 colleagues as to whether they are still part of the appeal to FIFA whose most negative consequences are more dire to the entire football spectrum than a local appeal to our Admin Courts (which by the way are part of our government.”