ZIFA DISMISS FALSEHOODS ON COVID-19 RELIEF DISBURSEMENTS
The Zimbabwe Football Association (Zifa) would like to correct an utterly fabricated and false story reported by one Sikhumbuzo Moyo in today's edition of the Chronicle newspaper.
This is one of the many false, malicious and outright defamatory articles published by the same paper and all written by the same journalist in recent days.
Zifa wishes to dismiss the misleading story by stating the following factual positions:
1.It is not wrong, illegal or against corporate governance as alleged by the self opinionated reporter for Zifa to pay clubs or affiliates from its resources earmarked for other activities but not yet for use with an intention to set off the same once covid funds have been received.
Zifa acted proactively to assist clubs and affiliates in financial dire straits after Fifa had already wrote to the association and favoured them with guidelines as to how covid funds could be disbursed.
3.Zifa wonders whether the same reporter who is clearly abusing the daily newspaper and state resources understands the basics of accounting.
It has come to the understanding of Zifa that the reporter has spoken to no one from Fifa and that Fifa has not and could never comment on their dealings with a member Association through the press
5. It therefore comes as no surprise when the same article purportedly "quote" a faceless, nameless Fifa official allegedly questioning why Zifa would have paid clubs well before receipt of covid relief funds.
It is equally shocking that the same journalist who some few days ago was claiming that Zifa is sitting on and delaying the disbursements of covid relief funds when clubs were suffering. At that point in time Mr Sikhumbuzo Moyo alleged that he had confirmed from again nameless Fifa officials that the covid funds had already been received by Zifa.
It is therefore strange that the same journalist who looked worried on the delayed release of funds then now seem to be crying his voice loud on why Zifa would have proactively disbursed funds to the very negatively affected clubs and affiliates.
Zifa would like stakeholders and the world to know that they are very strict followers of good corporate governance and its transactions are above board, permissible and legal.
Zifa does not carry out black market activities and all its transactions are converted in banks at prevailing interbank rates.
The payments to clubs and regions were done after funds were legally switched at the bank with no cash involved.
Zifa therefore dismisses the malicious and unethical article by the Chronicle. It is worrying that a reputable media outlet deliberately did not solicit comments from Zifa for a balanced, informed and objective story.
Zifa respects the role of the media to publish the truth without fear or favour but frowns upon misleading and deliberately malicious false stories as recently written by Mr Sikhumbuzo Moyo through the Chronicle.
It is baffling how Fifa could be alleged to have wanted to know where the money used to pay affiliates came from when the same article says the money was borrowed from the FAP funds held by Zifa.
ZIFA would like to inform the nation and all stakeholders that apart from the negative devastating effects of covid 19, the Association has never been this stable. Today Zifa under the current Felton Kamambo led board has almost paid off the entire legacy debt, distributed football equipment to all affiliates and has continued to receive Fifa and Caf support because it is meeting the strict criteria required by such stakeholders.
The Association has also invested heavily in grassroots, youth and woman football while making sure our national teams partake in all competitions.
It is sad that while many are seeing the good work including the proactive disbursements of covid relief funds, one bad apple has sought to mislead the public by creating fictious crisis of governance when the whole world and Fifa included are seeing the positives the current board is doing to improve our football.
Zifa reiterates that they will continue to work for the development of the game and would ignore side shows from some who are perennially in the election mode. Zifa is aware of the special and specific role Mr Sikhumbuzo Moyo and a few others have been given by some who lost previous elections and a few from the regulators to cause problems for our football. It therefore comes as no surprise to see daily dossiers of fiction and unsubstantiated articles from Mr Sikhumbuzo Moyo. Zifa is also worried if this is the editorial policy of a reputable paper like the Chronicle to churn unsubstantiated and self opinionated articles with no iota of the truth or maybe they are being misled by Mr Sikhumbuzo Moyo.
Zifa remains open to the dictates of accountability, good governance and transparency. We urge the public to dismiss the false article by Mr Sikumbuzo of the Chronicle with the contempt this deserves.
In conclusion, Zifa will soon and with proof shame all those behind shenanigans to cause mayhem in our football. It is sad that some of those uncultured elements are mandated statutorily to assist sport. A lot is happening to target ZIFA Board members, councillors and secretariat all with the sole aim of destroying the game so as to gain relevance. In the goodness of time such characters like Sikhumbuzo Moyo shall be exposed without fear or favour. Zifa has and will continue to appraise Fifa with hard evidence of such negative interferences.
FOR AND ON BEHALF OF THE ZIMBABWE FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION: XOLISANI GWESELA , COMMUNICATIONS AND COMPETITIONS MANAGER