Home » Legal and Judicial Affairs » Who Should Be Zifa Boss?

NEXT Saturday, unless the High Court rules otherwise today, Zifa councillors will be tasked with electing the leader of our beautiful game for the next four years. There are four names in the hat — Cuthbert Dube, Trevor Carelse-Juul, Leslie Gwindi and Nigel Munyati.

The person who should lead Zifa should be of g character, a person of influence. Trust is the foundation of leadership and the next Zifa president should be someone we can trust, someone we believe can do the job.

That leader should be a visionary.

We are looking for someone who blends personal humility and professional will. One who is self-motivated and self-disciplined to inspire action in others by doing the right things that will deliver the best results.

We are looking for a person who will create the right systems at Zifa and oversee the management of those systems, one who will create a good team of leaders to run with his vision.

One thing everybody knows is that there is no ‘remote’ leadership. We are looking for someone who is always available, one who goes to the people, listens to them because these are the stakeholders who have the knowledge and the understanding of the game and, in most cases, the answers.

We want someone who relates to the feelings of supporters when we win and lose. Someone, we can call, one of us.

We want someone who will connect with all the stakeholders, someone who will get the nation to sing his tune.

In short, we are looking for someone whose ‘moral code requires building excellence for its sake’. One who is ‘fanatically driven, infected with an incurable need to produce results regardless of the incentive system because they cannot imagine settling for anything less’.

Of course, it’s a big ask because we are human, and we have flaws.

So among the four who is close? This is my take:


HE has been running Zifa for the past four years. He was a well-respected professional when he came into office.

Huge expectations were placed on him based on past achievements. He was the CEO of PSMAS and chairman of ZBC among other things. He has had a team in the PSL and is sponsoring a Cup tournament in the Division One Eastern Region where he was once the chairman. To many, he was the answer to our football problems.

However, his term has been disastrous, to say the least. His character has been soiled by the much publicised ‘Salarygate’. One gets the feeling those who support him only do so for personal gain, something that is being termed ‘paid patronage.’

His organisational skills have been questioned by the way the ‘Asiagate’ saga was handled. The team he put at Zifa leaves a lot to be desired. A case in point is the drama that has been unfolding in the media between the CEO and the Warriors coach, between the CEO and the Mighty Warriors fitness trainer.

To our surprise, he chose to keep quiet. I am made to understand that Zifa has a Chief Operating Officer whom I haven’t heard of in the past four years.

Dube is one person who has been Missing In Action. I haven’t met him even though I attend every national team game played here.

His 2010 manifesto was to the point but the action, if any, that followed leaves a lot to be desired. The result is the sorry state that our football is in. To trust him to turn the tide of our football would be tragic.

However, he is well connected in his circles. Unfortunately, he has chosen not to utilise that. His choice has been to be the ‘saviour’ of the Association by lending them huge sums of money through his Buymore Investments. Now Zifa has a debt of about US$5 million and its president is the single biggest creditor.


I don’t know him. Where is he coming from? The little that I hear is that he didn’t do a good job when he was Zifa chairman in the early ’90s.

Can we trust such a man?

I believe in second chances but the biggest question is where was this man all these years and what does he know about our football after 21 years away from it. Does he have the energy to steer us out of the deep end that we are in?

I understand he is a successful architect and international businessman and that speaks volumes about his organisational skills.

However, he has been away for far too long to have any meaningful relationship with our game.


I am an admirer of this fiery man. His passion and love for football is unquestionable. He takes issues head on. Administratively, he has done well.

He was part of the executive team that took Dynamos to the Champions League final in 1998. Recently, he led Harare City as they mounted a credible title challenge only to lose it on the last day of the season. He has achievements to back his candidature.

He has been visible at Harare City games and some national team games.

However, his biggest let down is his volatile character. He has gone through two Zifa bans, one which was endorsed by Fifa, for bringing the game into disrepute.

The recent one, last year, was after a tirade directed at among others, the PSL main sponsors, Delta Beverages. This, regardless of how correct he was, puts a big dent on his relationship building capabilities.

However, Gwindi is the Public Relations chief at City of Harare, and that may aid him in building bridges where he has burned them.


He is a member of the current Zifa set-up heading the marketing portfolio.He is a down-to-earth, respectable person. He has vast working experience as a marketing executive across the globe.

Munyati is a former top-flight league player and administrator at club level. His involvement with football goes back over 30 years.

He is the co-founder and director of the Aces Youth Soccer Academy. This is a project that has been immensely successful judging by its products — the Musona brothers, Khama Billiat, Amidu brothers, Silas Songani, Wisdom Mutasa to name but a few.

There also has been continuity for more than 10years. This puts his name in good light vis-agrave-vis organisational skills and action-and-results orientation.

He is one Zifa board member who is ever present at national team games, especially at home.

Recently, he was the head of delegation at CHAN and I have seen him at several PSL games.

Munyati is the only candidate who has bothered to put his vision to the nation. His curriculum vitae is rich.

However, you can pass him without noticing, as such is his humility.

A damning fact is that he is a member of the current board, a board that has failed dismally. His contribution or non-contribution to this is a matter of debate.

My appeal to our councillors, some of whom are of a questionable integrity, is to do the right thing, choose the right man, on merit and for the good of the game.

Our game has suffered long enough, and its fate, is in their hands. This is the potential livelihood of our children and future generations.

We need to set the right foundation. Anything else let their conscience hound them.

Bothwell Mahlengwe is a banker and a former Premiership footballer. He can be contacted, for feedback, on: bmahlengwe.cb@gmail.com

Source : The Herald

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