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Tsimba admonishes national associations

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SPORTS and Recreation Commission (SRC) board member Aisha Tsimba believes sports administrators in the country are still not conversant with how national sports associations are governed.

Report by Wellington Toni

Tsimba, who is also the Zimbabwe Rugby Union (ZRU) vice-president, was delivering the keynote address at the official opening of the Fifa Member Association Administration Course that began at the Zifa Village on Monday.

“The commission continues to observe weaknesses in administrators who are not conversant with national sport statues (i.e. SRC Act Chapter 25:15 of 1991 and the Regulations or the Statutory Instrument 342 of 1995).

“We also have associations operating without well developed and document policies, procedures and by-laws, failure to comply with the statutes with respect to the submission of estimates of Income and Expenditure, annual reports, audited financial statements, failure to appreciate protocol issues and failure to comply with own constitution.

“I hope that the training you are undergoing will go some way in making you appreciate your administrative responsibilities and ensuring that concerns such as the ones above are dealt with for the sake of improving the professional administration of our sport institutions,” she said.

She said sport would continue to reel in poverty if administrators did not change their mindset.

“We often say that sport is now big business, but unless and until we change our mindset and approach to sport, sport shall continue to reel in poverty. In some instances we have been labelled as “professional beggars” because of our inability to demonstrate a business-like approach in our dealings with the outside world, in particular the corporate sector.

“It is in this light that the efforts of the Zimbabwe Football Association to reverse this ugly trend ought to be commended for they are meant to tame mismanagement of the world’s most beautiful game and project it in a positive light like any other brand.

“As the SRC, we compliment the efforts of Zifa through the promulgation of relevant policies that should take sport to another level like the Sport Corporate Governance Charter, among others. I am aware that of late our football has been rocked by serious challenges such as the Asiagate scandal which were threatening its existence.

“While the stance taken by the Zifa Board to “take the bull by the horns”, is laudable, our advice is that it is now time to speedily conclude the cases so that a new chapter may be opened. We are confident that some of the potential partners and sponsors who are sitting on the fence will come on board once you have decisively dealt with this impediment to football development. Apart from the above, we believe that this will also give the Zifa Board an opportunity to focus on the core business which is football development at all levels.”

Zifa has set up the Zimbabwe Football Trust in a bid to clear a $4 million debt and raise funding for the Warriors’ various assignments while the Asiagate probe is awaiting conclusion with some case having already been concluded.

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