The ongoing feud which has stalled the promotion of a team from Zimbabwe Football Association (Zifa) Division One Central Region must be resolved before the Castle Lager Premier Soccer League (PSL) season begins.
Two teams, namely Hardbody and Tripple B, are fighting for the sole ticket into the top-flight league, albeit in the boardroom. We all know that football must be played on the field, but this is not the case in Central Region.
Tripple B want to be awarded the right to rub shoulders with the country’s top sides after Hardbody were initially docked 42 points for using a player suspected to have been illegally registered.
Hardbody were handed back the 42 points following a decision by the Zifa Appeals Committee.
Hardbody were docked the points for using Tatenda Chingarah who did not have a reverse international clearance certificate (ICC) when he arrived from Namibia.
Zifa recently confirmed with us that the player in question had no reverse ICC, but an appeals committee reinstated the points to Hardbody which led to Tripple B’s appeal against the decision.
We don’t know how the Appeals Committee arrived at the decision to give back points to Hardbody, but the decision left many wondering since there is evidence Chingarah’s papers were not in order.
Tripple B have since sought a meeting with Zifa president Cuthbert Dube and have suggested they have damning evidence which they say could damage football in the country.
Sources told us recently that unnamed persons attempted to extort money from Tripple B with the promise of a ticket into the PSL and their telephone conversations were recorded.
If this is proven to be true, the culprits must pay the price for bringing the game of football into disrepute and failure to adhere to fair play.
We urge Zifa to address this issue with utmost urgency because it has the potential to explode and scare away sponsors who have returned to football in droves recently.
Once again controversy will stalk football when it had appeared the game was slowly coming out of the woods, particularly in the PSL which recorded significant sponsorship deals last year.
We are afraid all this effort will come to naught if Zifa drag their heels in dealing with the Hardbody and Tripple B issue.
We foresee a scenario where the PSL season will be delayed while teams go to court making accusations and counter-accusations.
We sympathise with the PSL because they will bear the brunt of the ineptitude of their mother body, Zifa, who find themselves in the news for all the wrong reasons.
Zifa have a lot on their plate at the moment.
Apart from this issue, they also have Asiagate to grapple with. The sad thing about all this is that solutions are not forthcoming.
The football governing body now spends more time doing crisis management than developing football.
Maybe that is why the Warriors are spectators while other teams play at the 2012 African Cup of Nations in Gabon and Equatorial Guinea.
We must take a leaf from countries like Zambia, Angola and Botswana whose stable administration of the game has deservedly reaped rewards.