CAPS United have moved to douse the flames after committing to pay players’ outstanding salaries this week following an impasse that turned ugly on Tuesday with a group of agitated players besieging the offices of club co-owner Nhamo Tutisani demanding their dues.
BY TAWANDA TAFIRENYIKA
Club president Farai Jere yesterday expressed regret at the deterioration of the situation and promised to pay the outstanding amounts.
The Premier Soccer League (PSL) chairman said that the situation could have been avoided with better communication.
Jere said when money from their sponsors NetOne came through, they made an immediate payment of one month salary on Friday with the hope of paying the balance this week.
He said the players were expecting a once-off payment on Friday, yet the management were planning to pay them another one month’s salary this week.
“From the reports that I got, there was a misunderstanding. While the management was planning to pay them salaries for the other month, they (players)thought that was the only money they were getting. But the issue has since been resolved, everything is now in order. Their money is there and is going to be paid this week. Look , this money came from NetOne and it is meant for salaries and it will be used for that purpose,” Jere said.
The businessman said they had been working hard to cater for the welfare of players under the COVID-19-induced lockdown and promised to do more for the players after giving them groceries which included 50kg bags of mealie-meal.
“I don’t know what spirit got in really, because my colleague (Tutisani) had phoned me, telling me everything was in order and they were planning to pay players the balance this week starting on Tuesday. He had even told me that he wanted to slaughter a beast at his farm for them. There were plans for more good things for them, but you know the devil is always there when something good is about to happen. You see those groceries which were being distributed to them, they were worth $200 000 — more than their salaries and all this is being done in recognition of their plight in this difficult period,” he said.
Jere apologised for the skirmishes.
“I want to apologise to the Caps family and Zimbabwean football in general for the unfortunate incident on Tuesday. Caps is a big machine and if it catches a cold, it affects the entire domestic football. It’s something we don’t want to see being repeated. We have since engaged the players and they have also apologised on their part. What is important is to unite during this difficult period, we don’t want any divisions,” he said.
Caps forward Phineas Bamusi was one of the players involved in a heated verbal exchange with club vice-president Tutisani and even dared him to sack him from the club.