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No coach for Warriors


The appointment of a local coach for the Warriors has been put on hold after Zifa on Friday resolved to appeal against a decision by the Department of Immigration to deny Belgian Tom Saintfiet a work permit.

Saintfiet was denied a work permit on the basis that his application was not in order as it did not have the requisite termination letter from the Belgian’s previous employers, the Namibia Football Association.

Saintfiet was deported from the country last month after he worked without a work permit in the run-up to the 2012 African Cup of Nations qualifier match against the Blue Sharks of Cape Verde.

The former Brave Warriors gaffer was deported via the Botswana border before he briefly settled in that country in the hope that the permit would come out before the Cape Verde clash.

He stayed at a five-star hotel which cost Zifa $200 a day but when it was apparent that his work permit would not come out any time soon, the Belgian moved back to Namibia.

His aspirations to coach the Warriors received a major dent when Immigration authorities last week rejected his application to assume his duties although he has already signed a contract with Zifa.

Saintfiet is believed to be earning $8 000 per month together with other perks like rental payments for his apartment in Germany.

Failure to bring Saintfiet on board would have seen Zifa fork about $90 000 down the drain in salaries for the coach as he has a binding contract.

It is in this view that Zifa on Friday resolved that they should appeal against the decision by Immigration authorities.

A source said: “We have resolved that we appeal against the rejection by the authorities to grant the coach (Saintfiet) a work permit. It is only after this due process that we will take another step to address the issue of the Warriors coach. The appointment of a local coach has been put on hold.”

Former Warriors coaches Charles Mhlauri and Rahman Gumbo had been strongly linked with the top job in the event that the football governing body dumps Saintfiet.

Mhlauri is in the United States while Gumbo is in Botswana where he is in charge of Mochudi Centre Chiefs.

Efforts to get a comment from Zifa acting chief executive officer Jonathan Mashingaidze, who was said to be in possession of a press release, were fruitless as he did not answer his mobile phone.

Mashingaidze, the supposed spokesman of Zifa, has developed the habit of not answering his mobile phone and this has prompted Zifa to establish a communications desk as per their Kariba resolutions last week.

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