BY MUNYARADZI MADZOKERE THE Zifa board, fresh from having had their suspension by the Sports and Recreation Commision (SRC) lifted, have their fingers crossed that Fifa will recognise the decision by the electoral college to revoke the mandate of former president Felton Kamambo, and two other former board members.
Kamambo and two other members were ousted from power by the Zifa councillors at the extra-ordinary general meeting which was held on April 23 in Harare.
This was after the board had been suspended by the SRC over a litany of charges in November 2021.
At the invitation of the beleaguered Zifa board, Fifa reacted by also suspending Zimbabwe from world football family.
After receiving communication of the new development at Zifa which saw the return of Gift Banda as the acting president, the SRC resolved to lift the suspension on the Zifa board.
And speaking at the board’s first press conference after the lifting of their suspension by the SRC in Harare last week, Banda revealed that communication with the international football body was underway to have the Fifa suspension lifted.
“The communication with Fifa is on going. We are still going to talk to Fifa to see how our suspension can be overturned. Honestly speaking all the things that we did as Zifa were according to the constitution. So I don’t see how Fifa would not accept the outcome of a properly constituted EGM and all that you are seeing, which saw the revocation of the mandate of our erstwhile colleagues who are not here with us,” he said.
When they announced Zimbabwe’s suspension, Fifa stated that the country’s ban could only be lifted when Kamambo and crew are back in control of local football.
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Banda argued that the revocation of the mandate of three Zifa board members was constitutional.
“It was done according to the constitution. We hope that Fifa is a constitution abiding body and will take cognisance of that fact and will hear our matter. We have since written two letters on the outcome of the EGM and we are hoping to get a response very soon,” he said.
Elected Zifa vice-president at the last elections, Banda was suspended by the board barely a month into his tenure. He emphasised the need for Zifa to work closely with the government if there was going to be any change.
“Mine is not about power. I think when I was suspended by my erstwhile colleagues even when I won my case to be reinstated I never forced myself. That’s why I stayed on the sidelines regardless of the fact that I was absolved of any wrong doing,” he said.
“For me its not about football glory it’s about putting football first, that’s why we have reached out to the SRC. Let me put it properly without the government, the grants that we have been getting from Fifa will never be enough for us to see a worthy change in our football.
“We need to be in good books with the SRC, Ministry of Sports and the government so that they dont feel when we are going to them to ask for assistance we are doing so in bad faith. We need to open lines of communication even with Cosafa, Caf and Fifa.”