Editorial Comment: Time to rescue Zifa from Cuthbert Dube

10 Jun, 2015 - 00:06 0 Views
Editorial Comment: Time to rescue Zifa from Cuthbert Dube Cuthbert Dube

The Herald

THE latest crisis that has plagued the Warriors this week is another reminder, if we needed any, that our football — the national game — is in the wrong hands, managed by a useless, if not senseless, leadership that has no clue, whatsoever, of discharging such a national mandate.

That we have cried, loud and clear, that we have probably the worst football leaders in the history of this game is there for the record but, even by their pathetic standards, we never believed that they could drag us so deep into the abyss.

That our Warriors, let alone our football, have turned into a joke, in the five years that Cuthbert Dube has been in charge, is clear for everyone to see but, even by his poor record as the leader, we never thought that he could take us this far into this pit of darkness.

Ironically, while our Warriors have become a punching bag, unable to even win one World Cup qualifier and not good enough to even leap out of the Nations Cup preliminaries, Dube and his cronies — led by his sidekick and lieutenant, Jonathan Mashingaidze — don’t seem to see anything abnormal about the current situation.

When we revealed in this newspaper last week that a major crisis was in store for the Warriors because their coach, Callisto Pasuwa, has only been paid $100 in nine months for his service to the national teams, the ZIFA spin-doctors quickly rubbished our story as being alarmist and accused us of fanning trouble.

But, just as we reported, Pasuwa clashed with his employers this week when he withheld his labour because, after working for months without being paid, and getting very little recognition from employers who don’t respect his rights and, crucially, who don’t care about his welfare, let alone that of his family, he felt that he was now being abused.

And he can’t be wrong on that.

When you have employers who feel it is more important to go and vote for the FIFA president, at a time when they know that their house is in turmoil, with the coach they chose to lead their national flagship team to the Nations Cup finals without a contract and unpaid in nine months, you know they either don’t care about that gaffer’s welfare or they are out of touch with the reality of the demands of their jobs.

Danny Jordaan, the SAFA president, didn’t go to Zurich for the FIFA Congress, because there were a number of issues that he needed to take care of at home, not least the exploding controversy related to allegations that South Africa allegedly paid $10 million in bribes to secure the hosting of the 2010 World Cup finals.

For Jordaan, what was important was to lay the ground work for how his country would provide their defence to these damaging allegations, especially given that he was the chief executive of the 2010 World Cup Local Organising Committee, and a key member who knew exactly what was happening behind closed doors as South Africa chased the dream to become the first African nation to host the World Cup.

In sharp contrast, Dube and his entourage — which included Mashingaidze and Board Member Tavengwa Hara — were some of the first delegates to arrive in Zurich even when they had a lot of issues that still needed to be sorted out back home, none as big as ensuring that Pasuwa’s contract was drawn out and resources looked for to try and pay him for his services ahead of this crucial match against Malawi.

The message that they sent to all the football fans was that casting the vote for the FIFA president was more important to them that ensuring that the issues related to the Warriors were sorted out so that our national team would not face the kind of challenges that they have had to deal with in this crucial week before they get their 2017 Nations Cup underway.

What is very clear is that we have a football leadership that doesn’t value what the Nations Cup or the World Cup represents, we have football leaders who think that it’s more important, if not fashionable, to select the next FIFA president, that it is a bigger assignment than laying the ground work to ensure that the Warriors plunge into the first game of their latest battle.

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