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Match fixing scandal, sanctions lifted

by Staff reporter
11 Feb 2017 at 09:18hrs | Views
HIGHLANDERS chairman Peter Dube and Bulawayo City assistant coach Farai Mujokoro were the odd ones out when ZIFA announced the lifting of suspensions to six individuals who were sanctioned by the association over allegations ranging from match-fixing to undermining the authority of the association.

Dube was also suspended from representing or associating himself with ZIFA or any of its members and this also affected his position at the Premier Soccer League.

Mujokoro was handed a five-year ban from all football activities after he was fingered as the chief culprit in the bid by Bulawayo City to fix their match against Border Strikers.

ZIFA president Philip Chiyangwa announced yesterday that he was recommending to the assembly the lifting of the bans that had been imposed on a number of individuals for varying offences.

Chiyangwa told a gathering of ZIFA councillors drawn from the Southern and Central regions as well as members of the media at a Bulawayo hotel yesterday that the lifting of the suspensions was with immediate effect.

"The following suspensions, which I am recommending to the congress, have been lifted with immediate effect, Ndumiso Gumede, Edzai Kasinauyo, Ian Gorowa, Nation Dube, Jerry Sibanda and Philani Ncube while Peter Dube's suspension has been referred to the review committee," said Chiyangwa.

The ZIFA president, who was in Bulawayo en-route to South Africa for a COSAFA executive meeting, was flanked by his deputy Omega Sibanda and ZIFA Southern Region chairman Musa Mandaza.

Harare lawyer Itai Ndudzo chairs ZIFA's review committee, which will assess Peter Dube's suspension.

Former Warriors midfielder Kasinauyo was suspended while he was a serving ZIFA executive committee member with the ex-Ajax Cape Town and Moroka Swallows man fingered in the Limpopogate match-fixing scam.

Kasinauyo was charged together with former Warriors coach Gorowa and Hwange gaffer Nation Dube on allegations that they tried to manipulate the outcome of the Warriors African Cup of Nations matches against Swaziland in April last year.

ZIFA also took the matter to the magistrates' court where Kasinauyo and Nation Dube were cleared after the courts dismissed the evidence led by the association's whistle blower Leeroy Waguta.

Bulawayo City chairman Jerry Sibanda and his two coaches Ncube and Mujokoro were found on the wrong side of the law after they allegedly bribed a Border Strikers goalkeeper to influence the outcome of their Premiership game.

In Gumede's case, ZIFA accused the former Highlanders chief executive of undermining their authority by writing to FIFA and peddling some falsehoods.

The veteran administrator, who has previously served as both ZIFA secretary-general and vice-president, has since retired from the game.

Peter Dube stands accused of contravening Article 1.15 of Schedule 11 of the ZIFA Rules and Regulations following what the national association said was his inappropriate conduct during a ZIFA congress indaba on October 29, 2016.

Sources in the ZIFA executive committee yesterday said the association could not immediately not lift the Highlanders chairman's suspensions because it had some legal implications, which needed a legal solution.

Peter Dube could, however, get a reprieve from the ZIFA councillors when they meet for their congress sometime in March or early April.

It also emerged yesterday that Vice President Phelekezela Mphoko and the Minister of Sport and Recreation Makhosini Hlongwane earlier held a meeting with Chiyangwa and Omega Sibanda to discuss, according to sources, the suspension of Peter Dube.

The meeting, which lasted close to an hour, was held at a City hotel and although none of the attendees spoke about what transpired in the indaba, sources said Mphoko had summoned the ZIFA leadership following representations made to him by some Bosso board members.

"The four guys (names supplied) approached the VP just before the Highlanders annual general meeting and pleaded with him to have Peter Dube back, but I think the VP's busy schedule could not allow him to do that hence this meeting," said the source.

Another source said Chiyangwa and Sibanda were very candid with Mphoko and argued that the move could set a very wrong and dangerous precedent in football, which was also going to attract the attention of FIFA as Government interference.

It is probably against this background that ZIFA have sought to have their legal team look at the suspension of Peter Dube and the implications of the lifting of his ban.

Source - the herald