ZIFA presidential aspirant Felton Kamambo has come out guns blazing, challenging incumbent Philip Chiyangwa’s decision to block him from taking part in the elections for the association’s top post on December 1.
BY HENRY MHARA
Kamambo, a former board member in Chiyangwa’s executive, had his nomination papers thrown out by the electoral committee after Zifa alleged that the latter is serving a suspension from all football activities.
Zifa claims they suspended Kamambo in March, soon after he had tendered his resignation letter, where he was citing expiry of his term of office.
Kamambo told NewsDaySport yesterday that he successfully filed his appeal papers before the Tuesday deadline.
“I asked for the papers with the reasons for my disqualification so that I can come up heads of argument, but I have not been furnished with any. I just responded based on their points. The provisions of appealing are not clear,” Kamambo said.
“They are withholding information to try and frustrate me. Up to now I don’t know how much is the appeals fee because it’s not written anywhere, so I ended up paying $3 500 which I think is reasonable. I didn’t want my appeal fail on a technicality,” he added.
In his appeal papers, Kamambo is challenging Zifa to prove their suspension claims.
“I hereby note an appeal, in terms of the Zifa Electoral Code Section 12(2) against the entire decision of the Zifa Electoral Committee handed down on the 2nd of November 2018. Further take notice that the notice that the appeal herein is being noted without having been furnished with detailed reasons leading to the disqualification of my nomination papers. I was only served with the letter hereto attached as Annexure (A) which contains very scant reasons for my disqualification. Accordingly, I reserve the right to file supplementary and detailed grounds of appeal upon being notified of the reasons for my disqualification.”
Kamambo resigned together with Piraishe Mabhena to leave Zifa with only three executive members in Chiyangwa, his vice Omega Sibanda and board member Philemon Machana, short of the required quorum to run the association
“I was never suspended from Zifa and in fact resigned from Zifa on the 28th of March, 2018 and upon my resignation I had never been suspended. The Zifa executive after the resignation of P Mabhena and myself no longer had a quorum in terms of the Zifa constitution Article 32 section 10. The correct position is that the full complement of the board is composed of 8 members. The board had remained with five members before the resignations. This literally means that the three members had no quorum and therefore cannot seat and make binding decisions according to Article 35 of the Zifa Constitution. Chiyangwa’s board was in terms of Zifa statutes dissolved,” he argues.
Kamambo said he was never suspended from Zifa as claimed.
“I was not notified of any suspension and I was never served with any suspension letter or notice. In any event Zifa had no capacity or mandate to suspend me after I had resigned as I was no longer part of Zifa. My resignation was with immediate effect. If they had issues with me, they should have reported them to the relevant authorities, and not for them to deal with them as if I was still part of Zifa. I challenge the Zifa secretariat to prove that they served me with the notice of my suspension and that I was ever called to answer any of the allegations contained in the alleged suspension notice. It is therefore a misdirection on the part of the Electoral Committee to disqualify my candidature based on an unsubstantiated fake suspension letter.”
Kamambo also cried foul after he failed an integrity test, which was conducted by the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (Zacc), where Chiyangwa is alleged to have strong links
“An integrity test is supposed to be conducted by a Zifa Ethics Committee as installed by the Zifa Assembly. Presently no such committee is constituted. The Electoral Committee relied on a letter from the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission which simply stated that they were investigating me. It is erroneous on the part of the Electoral Committee to rely on such a letter.”
He added: “It is clear that Zaac does not have the authority to do integrity checks on individuals. As such everything done by the commission on the guise of an integrity test is a nullity. In any event the letter states, they are investigating me. They do not state the nature of the investigation and the stage of the investigation and the date of commencement thereof. They also do not state the likely impact if any, their investigation will have on my integrity. What is crucial, however, is that I have never been convicted of any criminal offence. The commission did not disclose whether or not a docket has been opened against me so that I can verify on my own the alleged investigation.” he said.
“It is therefore a misdirection on the part of the Electoral Committee to have disqualify my candidate based on such scantily done letter. In any event the issue of referral of candidates to the commission has never been part and parcel of the election requirement. It was only introduced for the election of board members. The Electoral Committee does not have the mandate to change or amend the electoral laws, but only implement same. In this instance the Electoral Committee amended the laws thereby usurping the powers of the Assembly. All that was done by the Electoral Committee is rendered a nullity.”
The Electoral Committee did not disclose to Kamambo the reasons why he failed the integrity test, but it has emerged that Chiyangwa allegedly concocted rape charges, where he is accusing his challenger of sexually abusing a Mighty Warriors and Black Rhinos Queens player.