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Zifa circus on Warriors post

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So much has been said about the post of the Warriors head coach which has seen caretaker boss Norman Mapeza receiving support to earn the four-year contract.

But unfortunately (or fortunately) for him and many other hopefuls, Belgian Tom Saintfiet might be unveiled today.

Realistically, removing Mapeza from the Warriors technical set-up would be a monumental disaster as he has achieved good results, built a good team and identified a good crop of players for the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers.

Further, he has a lot of local players ready for the 2011 edition of the African Nations Championships (Chan) that roars into life in Sudan early next year.

With all this hullabaloo about the technical committee tasked with coming up with the head coach having made a decision to appoint Sainfiet, Zifa president Cuthberth Dube comes in and says he has changed the decision.

The committee comprising chairperson Kenny Marange, board members Benedict Moyo, Solomon Mugavazi, Twine Phiri, Gift Banda and Kenny Marange had enlisted Madinda Ndlovu and Friday Phiri as the Belgian’s assistants while Caps United’s Richard Tswatswa would come in as goalkeepers’ coach.

That would have frozen Mapeza out of the system when the national association had stated that the Under-23 coach would always understudy whoever is in charge of the senior national team, unless Zifa has forgotten that Mapeza is the substantive Under-23 coach.

After the decision to put the Belgian in charge, Dube was quoted as saying in weekend reports: “There were recommendations to appoint the Belgian coach but as the president, I have the final word and that decision will have to be changed.

“We will soon announce the national team coach and I can assure the nation that we won’t be getting the Belgian coach.”

This is the first time Dube’s long- standing song on corporate governance and transparency in the running of the game has been called into question.

First he does not have veto power — his biggest power is in casting a vote once there is a deadlock or firing the chief executive of the association.

What yardstick would Dube use to veto that decision?

That will be the most dangerous decision ever made and a wrong precedent because once a sub-committee has been put in place to deal with particular issues, its decision must stand.

Unless Dube is saying the technical committee is incompetent.What is worrying is that with just six months in office, there is a circus at Zifa and with three and half years to go before their tenure ends, we are bound to see more Animal Farm behaviour.

Playing to populism does not help and it does not seem like Dube is doing it for the first time. Last time it was the issue of suspended chief executive Henrietta Rushwaya.

Rushwaya was suspended as a way of testing the waters — then Dube said she had not been suspended — to gauge the other side before executing a mid-air somersault and suspending her.

On the issue of qualifications, there is no doubt that the coaching fraternity is heavily divided.

There are those who have five Ordinary Level passes and never played football but are running the national office today and there are those, like Moses Chunga and Mapeza, who don’t have those qualifications but are the best coaches around and have won league championships.

Bheki Nyoni, Nelson Matongorere and Charles Mhlauri qualify in that academic category. Technically, Mhlauri has been successful at club and national level, Matongorere has never been successful at club level and Nyoni has never been tried.

Madinda and Peter Ndlovu, Agent Sawu, Mapeza and Chunga have the Caf C Licence certificate although the Black Mambas technical director also has a German coaching licence.

So clearly, the qualifications for this high post was designed to shut out such individuals because, clearly, five ‘O’ Levels have nothing to do with football.

A Diploma in Sports Science? A minimum of five years consistent coaching at Premier League or national level? Administration experience or qualification? What buffoonery!

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