The Herald (Harare)

Zimbabwe: Madzorera Contradicts Nyatanga's Evidence

Former Zifa vice-president Mr Tendai Madzorera contradicted the evidence proffered by his former boss inferring that he might have been an accomplice in the Asiagate scandal. Madzorera made the inference while giving evidence in the case in which Rushwaya is accused of concealing transactions from a principal.

In his evidence on Monday, former Zifa chairman Mr Wellington Nyatanga said Rushwaya never concealed information about trips to Asia.

Mr Nyatanga also testified that he never saw money being exchanged during the matches.

He said Rushwaya had the right to conduct duties without consulting any board member and her contract allowed her to do it alone.

When asked to comment on Mr Nyatanga's evidence by prosecutor Mr Oliver Marwa, Mr Madzorera said Rushwaya did not have such a mandate, as it was tantamount to usurping Zifa's responsibilities.

During cross-examination by defence, lawyer Mr Charles Chinyama said Mr Madzorera's evidence was an attack on his former boss, adding that he had called him an accomplice in the transactions.

He said the impact of the evidence showed that all was not well in the Zifa house as their evidence contradicted. Mr Madzorera denied the assertion.

Asked if he was aware of instances where Mr Nyatanga would organise football matches, Mr Madzorera said that would have been mischievous of him.

Mr Chinyama said all the matches were organised by Mr Nyatanga and at one time he wrote to the Vietnamese Football Association requesting to take part in the Agribank Cup in that country.

He also produced a letter written by Zifa in 2007 appointing the man at the centre of the match-fixing allegations, Wilson Raja Perumal, to organise Zifa matches in Asia.

Mr Madzorera said this was illegal. Mr Chinyama suggested that Zifa investigations ended where they wanted them to end.

He asked if Mr Madzorera was aware that Mr Nyatanga personally went to Malaysia for the Merdeka Cup, Mr Madzorera confirmed, adding that the Merdeka Cup raised eyebrows as those who attended came with a lot of luxury goods, including vehicles.

Mr Chinyama suggested that Mr Madzorera was aggrieved because others had bought luxuries while he remained at home with nothing.

"Are you telling the court that Nyatanga was singing hymns from his own mind?" asked Mr Chinyama.

He said Rushwaya's contract of employment did not state that her decisions were subject to Mr Madzorera's approval. Mr Madzorera denied that he and Mr Nyatanga dined with Perumal in Zimbabwe.

Mr Chinyama had suggested that Nyatanga and Mr Madzorera had invited Perumal prior to Rushwaya's appointment at Zifa.

He added that they were using Rushwaya as a pawn in a game of chess intended to milk money from Perumal, saying that they should have informed his client that they were making money.

The lawyer also suggested that Mr Madzorera sought favours from Zifa president Cuthbert Dube as he wanted to bounce back as a board member.

Next to give evidence was former Zifa board member Mr Mwandibhuya Mutepfa, who said Mr Nyatanga had told him that Rushwaya was imposed on the association by politicians hence he could not question her decisions.

The trial continues today.

The charges against Rushwaya emanate from soccer matches the senior national soccer team played in Asia.

She is alleged to have arranged trips for the national soccer team to Malaysia, Vietnam, Singapore, Oman, Jordan, Bulgaria, China, Thailand and Yemen between 2007 and 2010 without permission from her superiors.

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