HomeOpinion & AnalysisComment & AnalysisSports Comment:On a wing and a prayer

Sports Comment:On a wing and a prayer

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Sooner or later, the government of Zimbabwe has to seriously bail out the Warriors from their myriad of problems.

While we understand the obvious monetary constraints that the government is facing — with civil servants demanding a salary
increase — the national team cannot continue operating this way.

Players — 90% of them playing outside Zimbabwe — deserve respect because they are professionals in their business. They cannot come here and be barred from training venues and have their passports confisticated because someone has not settled some bill. Once again, thanks to Mbada Diamonds Holdings and Zifa president Cuthbert Dube for the latest bailout.

Mbada, through their corporate services executive George Manyaya have stated they are harnessing diamonds for the people and since football has the largest following, they are not only bailing Zifa, but giving Zimbabwe a chance to be associated with the Warriors.

Mbada, besides paying up $50 000 for winning bonuses, $12 500 for appearance fees and $6 500 for camping allowances, did come up with a $44 850 package for air tickets which eventually saw the Warriors leave for Johannesburg, South Africa, yesterday morning.

Dube on his part, and for the third time, mortgaged one of his properties yesterday night to pay up the Warriors debt by June 15. If he fails to pay, the house will be registered as collateral and eventually sold if he fails to clear the debt by the agreed date.

A dilapidated bus donated to the previous equally failing regime will be auctioned this week.
Well, Zifa — if they are serious — must not bother about that ramshackle at all. It’s more dangerous to players than a drunk driver and as reliable as a knife in a gun fight!

They should just let it go and, as we have said in the past, concentrate on making sure the Warriors win.

Years back, we had Jonathan Moyo, the then erstwhile Media, Information and Publicity minister, making sure that football was a uniting force.

He bailed out the Warriors at every given opportunity, chartered planes for their trips and ensured that supporters backed the national team home and away.

If I may ask, where is Webster Shamu?

Of course he is around, but with serious political upheavals in his former ruling party, he is certainly not around. Moyo, gave the government all the publicity it needed through football and the Zifa Unity Cup — and how I wish we could go back to those days.

Will it not be nice to see Moyo teaming up with all-weather friends Mbada, Dube and supporters’ clubs to take back football to the top?

But if you thought Zimbabwe was alone in this predicament, then think twice.

Our West African friends, Nigeria, also failed to make the trip to Malawi on Thursday, giving incoherent excuses that ranged from flight safety to airport closures.

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