23 March 2014

Zimbabwe: Zifa Presidential Race Special - Let Me Finish What I Started-Dube

INCUMBENT Zifa president Cuthbert Dube has called upon the football family to give him another chance claiming he has unfinished business in football.

According to his manifesto, Dube admitted to failing the nation at some point but pointed out some of his successes which he says make him eligible to stand for yet another term. He also says he would want to fight corruption at all levels of the game.

Dube's manifesto cites a number of successes that include bringing to the country Fifa president Joseph Sepp Blatter in 2011 and facilitating his visit to State House.

He says his board is also credited for unearthing the famous Asiagate scandal where players, administrators and match official allegedly threw matches. The Zifa board appointed a committee that investigated the matter leading to the suspension of alleged perpetrators.

The effort however went to waste as Fifa refused to endorse the suspensions citing lack of proper evidence.

The Zifa president claims he created a working relationship with Fifa leading to his appointment in Fifa structures.

Dube also says he takes credit for the recent Chan qualification in which the Warriors performed well and reviving the Mighty warriors brand which he says had died a natural death.

Dube also thinks that managing to lobby the government to come up with a separate ministry to look into sport was a major achievement by his board.

The manifesto also looks at his failures which he admits to. The board failed to attract many sponsors and Dube says that was mainly because of the Asiagate scandal and the general bad name associated with financial mismanagement.

During his term of office, national teams failed to qualify for Afcon as well as the World Cup with junior teams getting banned from African tournaments for failing to fulfill fixtures.

Dube blamed his board for failing to persuade government to get more involved in sport. The board, which he chaired, failed to pay external auditors who are still holding to the association's financial results. They also failed to address issues of different national team coaches who have gone to the extent of taking the association to the courts over pay.

They also failed to deal with debts which have now ballooned to millions of dollars.

Going forward, Dube said, he would want to see the new board perpetuating the Golden Jubilee celebrations, rebranding the association, the Hall of Fame, annual wards, celebrity concepts as well as high profile international matches and events.

"I shall invite partners and stakeholders to help develop area zones, districts provinces and regions. I shall continue to stand out against all forms of corruption; it has no place in our game," read the manifesto.

"I shall work with local authorities, corporate and international investors in developing infrastructure for local football. Provinces and regions need to own structures. Above all, I will unveil the Zifa president legacy programme whose beneficiaries shall be our grassroots structures."

Dube also says he has established a relief fund which he says has kept Zimbabwean football running. The programme he said, included assistance to all national teams, servicing some of the Zifa debts, general administration, Zifa salaries, and other Zifa commitments.

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