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Gift Banda acquitted

by Staff reporter
08 Mar 2020 at 09:08hrs | Views
GIFT BANDA has sensationally bounced back into the ZIFA board after the association's disciplinary committee acquitted him of charges that led to his suspension by the domestic soccer body in January last year.

Banda's case has been dragging since the ZIFA board meeting of January 16 2019, which resolved to suspend him from all football activities.

The matter then took countless twists and turns as the legislator and former Njube Sundowns director battled to clear his name.

Fourteen months later, Banda is now heaving a sigh of relief after the ZIFA disciplinary committee chaired by Tendai Masawi exonerated him from allegations of usurping the board's powers by unilaterally dismissing then-Warriors assistant coaches Rahman Gumbo and Lloyd Mutasa.

"The disciplinary committee indeed met and deliberated on the matter and the long and short of it is that he was found not guilty of the charges he was facing.

"It was a unanimous decision by the committee not to find him guilty,'' Masawi said.

Charge sheet

Banda's ZIFA board charge sheet had read:

Honourable Banda illegally and unilaterally, without authority of the board, unconstitutionally usurped the powers of the executive committee, as enshrined in section 34(k) of the ZIFA constitution that delegate the sole responsibility of appointing national team coaches and other technical staff to the ZIFA executive committee and not individuals.

He illegally, unconstitutionally and against the ZIFA rules  and regulations (document 2, ‘regulations on the allocation of functions to standing committees Article 2.11") again without authority, usurped powers of the technical development standing committee, whose role is to, among other things, recommend coaches, instructors and trainers to the executive committee, thus bringing confusion, disorder and chaos to the smooth administration of our game.

Honourable Banda wilfully misrepresented, lied and misled the public, stakeholders and the world during his press statements that the ZIFA executive committee made the decision to fire coaches and made new appointments fully knowing that to be untrue, thus causing disaffection on the board, its councillors, the public, the national team, coaches and stakeholders.

By so doing, he brought our game and the association into disrepute at a time the association is busy cleansing itself of all ill manners and attempting to attract corporate sponsorship. His utterances were widely circulated in both mainstream and social media and attracted a backlash on the board on a decision it never reached.

Through his actions of gross misconduct, he destabilised the team, lowered the morale at a time the team is just one game away from qualifying for the next AFCON edition and in so doing, that would have negatively impacted on the preparations of the team and hence its ultimate performance.

Honourable Banda caused a publication of a falsehood that the head coach of the Zimbabwe men senior national team, Sunday Chidzambwa, was the architect or agreed to change his backroom staff, when he knew this was entirely false as the coach was happy to work with his team without any changes.

He arrogated himself the powers he does not have by appointing support staff to national teams in breach of Article 34 (a) of the ZIFA constitution.

In light of these very serious breaches, the ZIFA executive board has after a robust and extensive debate on the matter arrived at the decision of suspending/banning Honourable Gift Banda from all football-related activities and his current position in the executive committee with immediate effect.

The board has taken this route to show the entire world that it is serious about constitutionalism and the rule book.

Further, the board's mandate as given to them by the esteemed assembly members is to grow our game and to adhere to the constitution.

All the allegations were, however, dismissed after the disciplinary committee noted that Banda had only recommended but had not effected any dismissals.

Banda,could not be reached to discuss his reinstatement into the ZIFA corridors of power.

In his absence, board member (finance) Philemon Machana had been doubling as the acting vice president.

Source - sundaynews