Caps United demand compensation

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BY TAWANDA TAFIRENYIKA

AS domestic football primes for resumption, a burning issue of contracts signed in 2020 has erupted, with Harare football giants Caps United demanding compensation for taking care of the welfare of redundant playing staff.

Local football had been on suspension since March last year after the government imposed a national lockdown to curb the spread of COVID-19.

Caps United are among several clubs that had signed players in preparation for the 2020 season before football action was halted.

Players saw their one-year contracts lapse without them kicking the ball for their respective clubs.

The Green Machine signed, among other players, Innocent Mucheneka from Chicken Inn on a one-year deal ahead of the start of the 2020 campaign.

Mucheneka has since joined champions FC Platinum following the expiry of his contract on December 31.

They had also signed Ian Nyoni on a year-long loan deal and although he is still training with them, the parties concerned are yet to agree on a fresh deal.

It is Caps United’s contention that they should be compensated for taking care of playing staff’s welfare even though they did not play for them.

Green Machine co-director Nhamo Tutisani yesterday said they believed an arrangement where one part meets their part of the bargain and the other doesn’t do the same was unfair labour practice.

“We took care of the players in terms of payment of salaries even though there was no work done. Common sense demands that we should be compensated because we met part of our bargain and it is our considered view that the other part should also meet their part of the bargain,” he said.

“If that doesn’t happen, it constitutes unfair labour practice and we hope that we will be compensated.”

The development is likely to trigger more contractual disputes ahead of the start of the new campaign.

The Premier Soccer League has set next month for the restart of domestic football and several clubs have already started training in preparation for the new campaign.

Caps United will be looking to make up for the disappointment of losing the championship to FC Platinum at the final hurdle in 2019.

The Harare giants, however, face stiff competition from champions FC Platinum, Dynamos, Ngezi Platinum Stars and Highlanders, who have also beefed up their squads in preparation for the restart.

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