ZIFA has joined the nation in morning the late Vice-President John Nkomo, who was its patron.
REPORT BY WELLINGTON TONI SPORTS EDITOR
He died yesterday at the age of 78.
In a statement, Zifa president Cuthbert Dube said the death is a blow to Zimbabwe soccer, coming just a month after the passing on of former Warriors legendary striker Adam Ndlovu.
“Zifa is at a great loss over the death of our patron. As a family of football, we are like a flock of sheep that has been left in the middle of a treacherous stream.
“The passing on of the Zifa Patron comes at a time when the family of football was beginning to refocus on growing the game.
“The patron would always chide us and tell us to focus on core business issues and let the game of football prosper and blossom.
“He would always tell us to put aside our differences and selfish egos and let the game grow.
“His death, coming on the 50th anniversary of the football association, serves to remind us that our game has come a long way and we should work around the clock to make sure that the next generation will have something to celebrate about the beautiful game in Zimbabwe.
“We had plans as a football association to present a special award to the patron on the night of the awards in July and we are still going to do that posthumously.
“He was a pillar of strength, mentor par excellence, visionary and great football administrator who gave his advice selflessly to those who listened. The biggest challenge that he left with us is the establishment of the Football Trust.
“He was very passionate about it and we were looking forward to presenting the names of the trustees to the patron by the end of January. We shall take upon this challenge. He shall always live with us and may his dearest soul rest in peace.”
The Zifa board had met on Wednesday and resolved that the Football Trust would be in place as soon as possible and that despite the financial crunch the association was facing, they would not withdraw from the 2014 Fifa World Cup qualifiers.
The board also resolved that final budget consultations would be concluded next week before its presentation to the council on January 26. The board has also started investigations on the scandal surrounding the voting process in the Fifa Ballon D’or where technical director Nelson Matongorere voted as Warriors captain. Former coach Rahman Gumbo has denied he also took part in the vote.