Controversy mars Warriors, Botswana friendly tie

Controversy mars Warriors, Botswana friendly tie
Published: 18 January 2012 (1019 Views)
The Zimbabwe Football Association's recent Warriors trip to Botswana has come under heavy scrutiny with questions raised over the $18,000 ZIFA got from Mimosa Platinum Mine following revelations that the Botswana Football Association (BFA) sponsored the trip.

Mimosa Platinum Mine, underwrote the Warriors' trip to Gaborone to fulfil an international friendly match. But it has since been revealed that BFA footed all the costs.

BFA president, David Fani confirmed that the association booked the Warriors at Gaborone Sun at the association's expense and also refunded ZIFA for transport costs.

Fani said the arrangement was that ZIFA were supposed to use their own funds to hire transport to Gaborone and back and then they were going to be reimbursed the costs upon arrival in Gaborone.

"We hosted Zimbabwe so we took care of their accommodation and food. We booked them into Gaborone Sun. I actually saw the receipts. We had agreed that they use their bus and when they got here we reimbursed them. So, in essence, we took care of everything," Fani said.

On the other hand, ZIFA denied receiving any money from BFA. ZIFA's chief executive officer, Jonathan Mashingaidze said the money received from 'a partner' was used to cover costs related to the trip.

"We agreed on confidentiality with a partner who gave us some money whose figure I cannot make public as per agreement. The partner whom we wish to work with now and in the future gave us money to pay for accommodation, allowances for the team and transport. We were never reimbursed.

"We were approached by Botswana late November to play them in a friendly match. In return they would pay us a reciprocal visit in 2012. I advised the board about the trip and asked Botswana whether they would pay us any appearance fees and they said since they had qualified for 2012 African Cup of Nations, they would have so many expenses and would not afford except to host us in terms of food, shuttle transport and accommodation while there," said Mashingaidze.

On Friday last week, Mashingaidze said they are unaware of the reimbursement claimed by the BFA. "We still have not received the money from those who travelled," said the ZIFA chief executive officer.

ZIFA president, Cuthbert Dube is said to have read the riot act to his association over the chaos that marred the Warriors road trip. Dube was away on holiday in Europe when ZIFA recorded a new low by struggling to organise a bus to take the Warriors for their clash against the Zebras. Dube reportedly funds national teams through his family business

- mneng

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