THE treatment of the Mighty Warriors by Zifa would be excusable if it was happening for the first time, but it seems this is an ongoing process where the national women’s football team continues to be treated like a stepchild.
The way the Mighty Warriors are being treated is immoral and despicable to put it mildly and the bosses at Zifa should hang their heads in shame.
In fact, if ever there was a time for the Zifa executive to resign, this is it.
It just does not make sense that a team that has done the nation proud by winning and progressing to the next round of a continental competition is treated in this manner.
What should be happening is that a red carpet should be laid out for these ladies and their achievements celebrated, but instead they are being given a paltry $5 for their exploits.
What an insult.
Zifa on their end say the footballers should end their strike and go home, with money to be deposited into their accounts, which is quite bizarre.
The football governing body knew about the matches against Namibia well in advance and should have planned for them and prepared allowances for the players and technical team.
This ad hoc approach to women’s football is a clear illustration of ineptitude and leadership failure on Zifa’s part.
The way the Mighty Warriors have been treated should be a scar on the nation’s conscience, where everyone preaches women’s empowerment by day and by night our sporting heroes are forgotten.
Women’s empowerment does not begin and end with political representation, but extends to all facets of life such as business, arts and sport.
If sportswomen, who have just flown the nation’s flag this high are treated in that manner, then the uptake of sport in general and football in particular could decline, as this sends a bad message to young girls who might be interested.
We understand the economy is in the doldrums and everyone is struggling, but Zifa have been known to bend over backwards to accommodate the men’s team, meaning they surely have the capacity to do the same for women.
More so, the women’s team has relatively been more successful — far more than the men’s team, qualifying for the Rio Olympics against the odds and this is should be a sign on where Zifa should be investing.
This episode is embarrassing and was totally avoidable, Zifa should stop treating the women’s team like second-rate footballers.