BY Kevin Mapasure
ZIFA have launched a court bid to try and force the Sports and Recreation Commission (SRC) to rescind its decision to suspend the football body’s general-secretary Joseph Mamutse.
Last week, SRC suspended Mamutse to facilitate investigations relating to various issues mainly on the national teams that travelled to South Africa for the Cosafa Cup.
Zifa is accused of sending the women’s team to South Africa for the regional tournament without seeking approval from SRC.
It is the same case with the Under 17 girls’ and boys’ national teams.
Mamutse is in trouble over the expelling of the boys’ team from the Cosafa tournament over age-cheating.
Zifa argue that Mamutse’s suspension was unprocedural as SRC did not among other things accord him an opportunity to defend himself.
The lawyer, representing the football association, Chenaimoyo Gumiro said that they had launched two appeals with the Administrative Court, with one being an appeal by Zifa while the other is Mamutse’s appeal against the SRC decision.
“Basically, we have approached the Administrative Court because we feel that the suspension of Mamutse was unprocedural,” he said. “Our argument is that the SRC did not follow the demands of the SRC Act. They did not afford Mamutse an opportunity to defend himself. They proceeded to use section 30 of the SRC Act to suspend Mamutse. The suspension presupposes that Mamutse in the case has already been found guilty and suspension is a penalty so that is why we are appealing.”
Zifa considered the potential consequences that could come with reporting the SRC to Fifa.
If Fifa deem the SRC actions as government interference, Zimbabwe face the prospect of being suspended and all national teams would be banned from participating in international tournaments while financial tapes would be shut.
The SRC has argued over the course of the week that the suspension of Mamutse could not be deemed as government interference.
They also argued that the suspension was to facilitate investigations, yet Zifa view it in different light.