The Zimbabwe Football Association (ZIFA) legal advisor, Chenaimoyo Gumiro has claimed that the suspension of the board by the Sports and Recreation Commission is “a merry-go-round scenario”.
Gumiro told Manica Post Thursday that the dissolution of the Zifa board is a legal nullity. He said:
ZIFA was served with a suspension letter on Tuesday, and it was withdrawn. The latest suspension only has four grounds relating the 2019 AFCON. Basically, they have removed all other allegations. They have zeroed in on the AFCON 2019.
This is a legal nullity. They do not have the authority to suspend the board in the manner they did. In terms of the SRC Act, the commission can only suspend the Zifa board for committing acts contrary to national interests, and that decision can only be reached after the executive committee has been given a chance to respond.
SRC, in this case, is the complainant, prosecutor and judge. Even a layman will tell you that the way they are handling this matter is not legally proper. There are serious ramifications that will come with the decision. They say they are prepared for it, but we are not sure if they understand the dynamics that will obviously come into play.
To us, this is just a merry-go-round scenario because if we are booted out of the family of football playing nations, we can only be readmitted if the same suspended executive committee is restored.
So there is really no use of suspending or dissolving an executive committee under the pretext of solving problems when you know you will be asked to restore the same before being readmitted.
The initial suspension letter sent Tuesday cited “abuse of public funds, incompetence, failure to adhere to COVID-19 protocols when sending national teams outside the country, failure to address the gender imbalances relating to the treatment of female national teams when compared to their male counterparts.”
The commission then withdrew the suspension letter, only to issue another one that zeroed in on four allegations relating to failure to account for proceeds from the Warrior’s Africa Cup of Nations participation in 2019.
Fears abound that the suspension will attract sanctions from FIFA and CAF who do not tolerate government interference in sport.
More: Manica Post