Home » Sports » Zifa Referees’ Committee Dissolved

ZIFA have been forced to dissolve their referees committee after it emerged that its composition was in violation of fifa regulations and set to attract sanctions from the world soccer governing body. Following the election of a new board on March 29, zifa had set up various sub-committees that would help pin the administration of the game.

These sub committees also included the zifa referees committee for whom the association’s vice president Omega Sibanda, had been tasked with chairing.

Sibanda was being deputised by retired referee Brighton Malandule with Alfred Zindove, who is also a former referee acting as secretary and another ex-referee Masimba Chihowa, responsible for appointments.

The committee also included Sabelo Sibindi Maphosa as chief instructor, chief match commissioner Gladmore Muzambi, co-coordinator Dennis Tshuma and fitness instructor Joseph Mussa.

But it came to light during an induction course staged by fifa for the new zifa board that there were problems with the manner in which that committee was constituted as it did not comply with the amended fifa regulations which bar “any individual coming from a football body to sit on the committee”.

The induction workshop, held at the zifa village in Mt Hampden was conducted by the fifa development officer for Eastern and Southern Africa Ashford Mamelodi, and the world body’s Referees development officer for the region Felix Tangawarima.

It then came to light during discussions on the various topics related to the governance of the game that zifa had erred in the way they had set up the committee that would be in charge of refereeing in the country.

fifa last year, also outlawed the setting up of a referees’ association, insisting there should be one committee overseeing the operations of referees in the country and directed that zifa just like all the other associations around the globe should have a referees’ desk at their secretariat.

The local referee’s desk at the zifa secretariat is manned by another retired referee, Obert Mamvura.

But it is the contravention of the regulations on the organisation of refereeing in fifa member associations that has forced zifa to disband the Sibanda committee and the board would have to reconstitute the local committee.

The violation of the fifa regulations mainly emanate from the fact that some of the members of the committee such as Sibanda, Malandule, Tshuma and Chihowa are deemed ineligible because of their direct links with football bodies or zifa affiliates.

Sibanda’s eligibility stemmed from the fact his status as a players’ agent, Malandule is a member of the Southern region board, Tshuma is the Matabeleland North provincial chairman and Chihowa came into zifa administration through the National Association of Primary School Heads.

The regulations prohibit people with interests at clubs, provinces, players, regions, schools or even districts to sit on the committee that is in charge of referees given the delicate nature of this body in the arbitration of matches.

“The Referees Committee shall be composed of a chairman, a deputy chairman and the members deemed necessary to discharge its duties. Its members may not be affiliated to any clubs, leagues or any other football organisation. The Executive Committee shall appoint one of its members as chairman of the Referees Committee.

“The deputy chairman and members of the Referees Committee shall be appointed by the president of the Member Association at the proposal of the chairman of the Referees Committee,” reads Article 3 of the regulations”.

The committee in turn then appoints referees to the zifa panel as well as the match assessors.

zifa chief executive Jonathan Mashingaidze, acknowledged that they had transgressed the fifa regulations and indicated that a new committee was set to be unveiled at their board meeting in the capital on Saturday.

“There is no way zifa can be seen to be going against the tide, it would be irregular.

“We complied with the fifa directive to set up a referees’ desk and likewise we have to comply with the regulations.

“In fact during the induction seminar fifa also implored the zifa board to ensure that they do not make a blind take off to their tenure in office by flouting regulations so that like all requirements, we have to be seen to complying with fifa and the same should go for all standing committees,” Mashingaidze said.

Source : The Herald