ZIFA , eager to ensure they pull all the stops to guarantee the Warriors possible qualification for the 2013 African Cup of Nations, yesterday unveiled a strong committee laced with high-profile figures from the corporate sector who will lead the ambitious campaign to mobilise resources for the senior national team.
The Warriors will face Angola in Luanda on the weekend of October 12-14 in the second leg of the final Nations Cup qualifier.
Rahman Gumbo's men will travel to face their old regional rivals carrying a 3-1 cushion achieved at Rufaro on September 9.
Despite the first leg lead appearing comfortable, Zifa are not taking any chances both on and off the field and yesterday the association's president Cuthbert Dube commissioned a strong team of men and women they believe will assist them secure at least US$500 000 needed for the Warriors' showdown with the Palancas Negras.
Dube told guests at the commissioning ceremony in the capital that the challenge of ensuring the Warriors' qualification was not just a Zifa baby but needed the will and commitment of all Zimbabweans.
Should they overcome the Angolan hurdle, it would only be the third time that the Warriors would have qualified for the Nations Cup jamboree in the country's 32 years of Independence.
Despite the tough task they face in mobilising the resources needed, Dube believes the committee, which includes some of the high-profile names in commerce and industry will work round the clock to ensure the Warriors complete their mission in Luanda without hitches.
Some of the top figures on the on the committee such as Mbada Diamonds executives George Manyaya and Major Mahlangu, BancABC executive Desmund Ali, CBZ Holdings executive Joel Gombera and businessmen Maxwell Mugabe and Omega Sibanda have also been among a small band of domestic football's all weather friends.
Manyaya whose passion and commitment to ensuring the growth of the local game has endeared him with the football family will be the committee's chairman. Now Manyaya and his colleagues will combine to pull their collective efforts for the cause of their motherland and help ensure the Warriors will be among the 16 teams that will line up at next year's Nations Cup finals in South Africa.
With the Warriors having won the first of their battles against the Palancas Negras, Dube said qualification for the Nations Cup finals was not an insurmountable task for Gumbo and his troops.
"It is with great humility and honour that I on behalf of the Zifa board and the entire family of football commission a great team of men who shall be charged with the not so easy task of mobilizing resources ahead of the 2013 African Cup of Nations finals home stretch.
"Today ladies and gentlemen we shall witness a historic ceremony which shall serve as a testament to our resolve and commitment to resource the 2013 African Cup of Nations final qualifiers.
"Football competitions thrive on adequate resourcing and focus and to this end the Zimbabwe Football Association has seen it fit to put together a team of patriotic business executives whose brief shall revolve around unlocking the financial and material resources abounding in our community, in support of the Warriors 90 minute walk to the continental jamboree set for South Africa, eMzansi in January and February 2013.
"The 90 minutes comprising two equal halves, stand in the nation's arduous march to Mzansi. Qualification for the finals in South Africa is not insurmountable as long as we deploy our human, material and financial resources for that purpose between now and the 14th October 2012.
"The will to triumph over Angola in Luanda should challenge all Zimbabweans, regardless of their social, economic and political placements to rally behind the Warriors' ultimate showdown against the Palancas Negras.
"Where there is a will to succeed there shall be a way to such success. The committee that shall be unveiled today shall lead all Zimbabweans in unlocking the resources for the Warriors' campaign," Dube said.
The Zifa boss also pleaded for greater co-operation between football and the corporate world.
"Football has very attractive offering which the corporate world would like to ride on. The offerings in question afford the business community to showcase their corporate products and services and such synergies help show how football and business are Siamese twins.
"Football is a powerful vehicle for social and economic transformation of the community we live in. football's value system is unadulterated, pristine and it is the values in question that can touch the world, turning it into a beautiful haven.
"The Warriors are a football force on the rise after some years in the woods," Dube said.
The Warriors, Dube also reckoned, will succeed on the international stage if they are adequately funded and left to focus on the game only.
"Cameroon Egypt, Guinea, South Africa Kenya were nations of the Warriors hunt for glory and Angola are not invincible for as along as we resource the Warriors. It must never be lost on our minds that the Angolans have raised the bar in terms of resource mobilisation and are not leaving anything to chance.
"It is our appeal to Mzansi 90 to take the campaign to all corners of the globe where Zimbabweans are domicile . . . the Warriors belong to Zimbabweans both at home and in the Diaspora. Let us make the final 90 minutes a memorable expedition which shall turn into our football folklore for posterity," Dube said.
Ali who was representing the Mzansi 90 committee said they are relishing the challenge of raising funds for the Warriors and they will do everything they can to ensure the money is available.
"It is important that we work together for the national cause and help the Warriors qualify for the Nations cup.
"It's an important and challenging task but if we can put heads together we can pull through.
"It's not going to be an easy task given the little time we are left with but we need work hard as we are only left with 90 minutes from qualifying," said Ali.
Mzansi 90 Committee:
Joel Gombera, George Manyaya, Major Mahlangu, Desmund Ali, Ntombizodwa Toppela, Memory Kanyati, Tichaona Hwingwiri, Tich Matambanadzo, Rutendo Chaburuka, Nathan Shoko, Marios Helas, Bernard Gwarada, Chamu Chiwanza, Omega Sibanda, Busi Khumalo, Wavel Gunda, Simeon Jamanda, Jabulani Nkomo, Washington Mutasa, Maxwell Mugabe, Hugo Ribatika, Coxwell Chigwana.