Former Zimbabwe captain Moses Chunga believes the appointment of Kirsty Coventry as Minister of Youth, Sport, Arts and Recreation is the best thing ever to happen to the sector. The legendary Olympian took her oath of office in Harare yesterday.
Chunga hailed President Mnangagwa as a hands-on statesman for his decision to place a sports personality in the position.
He said Government has taken some positive steps to correct the past wrongs in a nation that has for a long time disregarded its sports legends.
The former DeMbare star said Coventry's rich sporting background and her track record in leadership, with international sports organisations, made her as the best person for the job.
"It's something that was long overdue. Personally, I wasn't surprised because she has been in the trenches and has seen it all.
"It shows our President is someone not divorced from the realities on the ground. He is a practical man who should be hailed for taking sport seriously.
"I am sure the coming in of Kirsty will bring a massive change to the face of sport in Zimbabwe. She is someone who understands the joy of winning and the agony of missing out on the podium, as opposed to most of her predecessors.
"That alone is priceless, you can only give what you have.
"It takes a practical person, who is wise, to lead the way in building and developing success. Sport is definitely poised for greater things," said Chunga.
Coventry takes over from Kazembe Kazembe, who has been reassigned to the Ministry of Information Communication Technology and Cyber Security.
Her appointment has been greeted with excitement within the sports fraternity and the nation at large.
"This is a refreshing diversion from the layman leadership. Sport does not need unrealistic theorists who are only good at producing theories of what could be done without really committing themselves to executing things.
"They don't understand what it means or what it takes to prepare for a competition.
"This is an excellent move by the President. I am sure this has also broken down the barriers with the constituency because it was not easy getting the best ideas for development to the previous political chiefs who always created around them that aura of fear.
"Their offices were not approachable.
"But the President has shown he is keen to see change, that's why he is saying I am your servant. We are hoping the youths and sports-people will no longer feel intimidated to get their issues heard," said Chunga.