LESLIE Gwindi will decide on his next course of action after being banned from football matters for five years on Tuesday night when he receives the judgment from the Zifa Disciplinary Committee.
The Harare City chairman was banished from football for five years — three wholly suspended and one year struck off if he pays a $6 000 fine and another suspended if he issues a public apology to Zifa, the Premier Soccer League (PSL) and Delta Beverages.
The ban could also have an effect on Gwindi’s election bid at either the PSL or Zifa should he seek office if he fails to meet the set conditions.
Yesterday, Gwindi told NewsDay Sport that he had not yet received a copy of the judgment.
“I have not had sight of the judgment, but my lawyer had briefed me last night (Tuesday). I have to sit down with my lawyer first,” he said.
But chances that Gwindi would back down from his criticisms appeared highly unlikely yesterday, as he said: “The facts are there for all to see, but I have to sit down with my lawyer first.”
Gwindi appeared before the committee on December 20 last year charged with verbally attacking Zifa, the PSL and Delta Beverages, former Warriors coach Klaus-Dieter Pagels as well as the then Education, Sports, Arts and Culture minister David Coltart while addressing the Bulawayo Press Club last year in March.
Gwindi, who had brought in former Zifa president Leo Mugabe, ex-vice-president Vincent Pamire and Motor Action Football Club director Eric Rosen as witnesses, admitted uttering the alleged comments, but stressed that they were merely an expression of an opinion given in the spirit of trying to help improve the game.
He said the utterances were in line with the rights conferred on him by the Constitution of Zimbabwe — the right to express an opinion, which opinion constituted a fair comment in light of the fact that Zifa, Delta, Pagels and Coltart were not sacred cows.
He argued they should accept criticism. The complainant, Zifa, was represented by PSL chairman Twine Phiri and Zifa vice-president Ndumiso Gumede.
Phiri said he was eventually summoned to Delta where he was asked by the marketing director Max Karombo if PSL still wanted the Delta sponsorship following the comments by the respondent. Phiri stated that he had told Karombo that they still wanted the sponsorship and had consequently apologised.
He further stated that Delta wanted to know what action the PSL would take.
Zifa recently fired its technical director Nelson Matongorere for masquerading as Warriors captain in the Ballon D’Or vote.