Zimbabwe football coach Zdravko Logarusic has been denied entry into South Africa on the basis of him not holding a valid visa for the host country, South Africa.
Logarusic was turned away upon arrival at Oliver Tambo international Airport on Monday ahead of the Costa Cup.
Zifa communications officer Xolisani Gwesela argued that Logarusic was denied entry despite the association having confirmed with visa and travel agencies in Zimbabwe prior to departure.
“We were assured that as long as he possessed a valid Zimbabwean workers permit, he would be allowed entry in South Africa,” Gwesela said.
“We were then dismayed upon arrival when we were told by Immigration officials that only service and diplomatic holders from Croatia were exempt from South African visa requirements.”
“This was not anticipated by the Association and the travel agent has availed a letter of apology after this debacle. The Agent has also agreed to reimburse expenses resulting from this anomaly.
Unfortunately, it is very clear that valuable training time has been lost as a result of this gaffe, Zifa said.
“The Association is now saddled with ensuring that the coach gets a visa and proceeds and join the team in Port Elizabeth in the shortest time possible.
Meanwhile assistant Coach Tonderai Ndiraya will prepare the team in the absence of Coach
Lloyd Chitembwe was never pencilled to travel to South Africa as a result of his non authorisation to travel to South Africa.
“We apologise to the nation for the inconvenience, however the team remains in high spirits and ready to compete to everyone’s best abilities,” Xolisani said.
“We would like to assure the nation that the Association is making frantic efforts to remedy the situation,” he added