Two more sucked into ZIFA saga

Two more sucked into ZIFA saga
Published: 20 December 2017 (802 Views)
ZIFA have added their former finance manager Benjamin Dhewa and ex-accountant Fabian Vanganayi to a cartel of football leaders, led by their former chief executive Jonathan Mashingaidze, whom the association accuse of having captured Zimbabwean football for years in which they ran a fraudulent multi-million-dollar scheme that ripped the game of its financial muscle.

The domestic football governing body wants the trio arrested for the financial crimes they allegedly committed as they worked in cahoots to milk the association during their time as leaders of both the financial and administrative arms of ZIFA.  They have dubbed it "ZIFA Capture" and claim the fraudulent activities of the trio ripped the heart off domestic football and left it resembling a shell weighed down by a debt that ballooned from $600 000 to over $7 million in less than six years.

The Warriors were also expelled from the FIFA 2018 World Cup qualifiers, for the first time in their history, after ZIFA failed to pay the team's former coach Valinhos about $68 000 despite the PSL having forwarded a similar amount from their coffers for the dissolution of the debt.

The money paid by the PSL, just like about $55 000 that was given to ZIFA by their benefactor Walter Magaya for the Young Warriors COSAFA Under-20 Tournament in South Africa in 2015 did not find its way to the intended destination. This led to the prophet publicly rebuking Mashingaidze for the way his financial support ended in the wrong hands.

"I wasn't very happy on the issue of the rands (560 000) that l gave (to the Young Warriors). Some of the players didn't even get them, including the coach," Magaya thundered back then.

"Mr Mashingaidze, my support is not for you, is not on the ZIFA side, l'm not a political person. My support is on these guys (players)." ZIFA made a report to the police on Friday in which they accused Mashingaidze of running a cartel that was fleecing the association of millions of dollars in a fraudulent scheme that had left the organisation with a debt in excess of $7 million.

Yesterday, ZIFA added former accountant Venganayi and ex-finance manager Dhewa to the cartel in a report they made to the police. The developments came on the day that the Confederation of African Football also exposed Mashingaidze as the man who was working as a local spy for the continental body's former president Issa Hayatou during the boardroom battles that eventually toppled the Cameroonian strongman from power.

Mashingaidze had gambled on Hayatou retaining his position in the battle against Ahmad and then using a dossier, which the former ZIFA chief executive sent to CAF, to boot ZIFA president Philip Chiyangwa from his position as part of a cocktail of disciplinary measures against the Harare property tycoon for leading the campaign to topple the Cameroonian.

Although Mashingaidze was still employed by ZIFA back then, he secretly sent a dossier to CAF outlining what he claimed to be transgressions by his boss and calling for the continental football governing body to kick him out of domestic football administration.

That CAF didn't even entertain Mashingaidze's package of allegations, including vote-buying and mismanagement, but have now sent that dossier back to Chiyangwa, exposing Mashingaidze's shenanigans, also suggest that the former ZIFA chief executive's battle to rope in either the continental organisation or FIFA to kick out the ZIFA boss are clearly a fruitless exercise. ZIFA have now gone a step further to try and nail Mashingaidze and his crew.

"We made a report with the above RRB Number (report on theft/fraud at ZIFA RRB 3370999) on Saturday 16 December 2017 wherein the accused person was one Jonathan Mashingaidze," read a report filed with the police yesterday by ZIFA chief executive Joseph Mamutse.

"Further perusal of the information at hand has revealed that the accused worked with the following persons in committing the crimes in the report and others. Mr Benjamin Dhewa ID number 18-06224 D 18 of 1619 Damofalls and Mr Fabian Madzima Venganayi of Second Avenue, Mbare.

"The criminal activities took place over several years with the parties taking advantage of their positions and influential offices to siphon money out of the institution fraudulently.

"The three cases in the 2011 Audit Report (reveal):

1) theft of an amount of $41 215

2) theft of amount of $99 648

3) fraud amounting to $744 635

"It has now come out that the trio, working together and at times individually, stole or misappropriated or defrauded the association of various amounts on several occasions some of which are listed below:

a) Mr Fabian Venangayi stole $1 500 by way of withholding part of the gate takings and converted the amount to his own use and never returned the money to ZIFA.

b) The trio took advantage of a garnish placed ZIFA BancABC account and fraudulently withdrew money from the account and converted it to own use. "We are requesting the Zimbabwe Republic Police to effect arrest of these criminals and bring them to book.

"ZIFA is suffocating from the problems brought about by these people. It would be in the best interest of justice that the culprits return whatever moneys they stole and/or defrauded from ZIFA. We need to regain lost confidence and trust from the donor community in order for ZIFA to function smoothly."

- Chronicle

Tags: ZIFA, Magaya, football,
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