Defender Lawrence Mhlanga, who has been subject of an ownership wrangle between Chicken Inn and FC Platinum. faces a ban from football if found guilty of signing a contract with two different clubs.
BY TAWANDA TAFIRENYIKA
Mhlanga had served half of his two-year contract when he is alleged to have signed for FC Platinum as a free agent and penned another contract with them.
The matter has since been taken to the players’ status committee and as well as the Labour Court.
Fifa statutes, however, forbid players from signing contracts with two different clubs and Mhlanga faces the possibility of having to answer to such charges.
The Zifa secretariat cleared the player to sign for a club of his choice, but the move was challenged and rebuffed since the matter had not gone through the players’ status committee.
In their desperate bid to sanitise the player’s clearance, the association is trying to solve the impasse through the relevant committee but even in that attempt they have been bungling the process.
Zifa spokesperson Xolisani Gwesela confirmed the secretariat cleared the player to play in the Caf Champions League tournament for the platinum miners.
This is however in contravention of the association statutes which require such matters to be determined by the players’ status committee.
Asked how the secretariat got involved in the clearance of the player, Gwesela said there were certain issues that the Zifa secretariat could look into.
“It was Mhlanga who brought the matter to the players’ status committee through the Footballers Union of Zimbabwe (FUZ). The players’ status committee set yesterday (Wednesday) to make a determination on the issue. Once a determination is made, we will make it public,” Gwesela said.
However, Chicken Inn secretary Tavengwa Hara who was asked to submit submissions to the players’ status committee said the fight was not about who owns the player now, but the events of 2017 when the player was cleared to play for FC Platinum when he was still their player.
Hara emphasised that for this year there were no longer interested in Mhlanga.
“The fight is not about 2018, it is about last year (2017) when the player spent the whole year without playing football. Who cleared him to play in the Caf Champions League? Where was the players’ status committee? We no longer need him (Mhlanga) for this season, He is no longer our player, our issue is who had cleared the player?
That’s the fight which is there,” Hara said yesterday.