BY CHARLES LAITON
The Zimbabwe Football Association (Zifa) has finally breathed a sigh of relief after efforts by a former employee, who had sought to garnish its bank account over a US$518 331 debt, were thwarted by the High Court on Wednesday last week.
On Monday last week, Zifa petitioned the High Court with an urgent chamber application seeking to protect its funds held in its Ecobank account after former administrator Lazarus Mhurushomana had engaged the sheriff of the High to access the money.
Zifa argued that if execution of its bank account was to proceed as scheduled on September 2, the football mother body would be sanctioned by Fifa since the funds were specifically meant for development.
The matter was then determined by Justice Alpheus Chitakunye, who ruled in favour of Zifa.
“The execution of the writ of execution in case number HC5721/09 dated July 26, 2019 be and is hereby stayed. Each party shall bear its own costs,” Justice Chitakunye ruled.
Prior to the determination of the matter, Zifa president Felton Kamambo had filed an affidavit saying there were fears that Mhurushomana’s action would also derail both the men’s and women’s national soccer team matches that were set to be played in and outside Zimbabwe.
Mhurushomana’s move came about at a time when Zifa was about to host the senior women national team’s international match against Zambia on September 1, while the men’s national team was scheduled to play Somalia in Djibouti on September 7 in a World Cup qualifier.
Kamambo had further argued that if the writ of execution was allowed to stand, an illegality would have been perpetrated in that Mhurushomana would have executed an order of the court without compliance with the rules of the High Court.
Kamambo further said the writ obtained by Mhurushomana was not lawful in that the first order against Zifa was granted on September 17, 2013, but the former administrator obtained the writ of execution on July 26, 2019. He added that Mhurushomana obtained another writ of execution in 2014, a writ executed by the sheriff over the same judgment.
Zifa was represented by Chenaimoyo Gumiro.