ASIAGATE suspects sanctioned by Zifa have been handed a lifeline after a local Non-Governmental Organisation, Pan African Development Foundation (Panad), moved to press Zifa to nullify all sanctions and fines or face court action.
Report Staff Writer
The players and officials have the Appeals Committee at their disposal to appeal against conviction and sentence but have found the US$6 000 appeals fee too prohibitive.
Some had sought to make use of the courts but were warned that such action would see their bans further increased because Fifa is intolerant of football matters being dragged to the courts.
Panad is headed by former Dynamos chairman Ignatius Pamire.
Pamire announced at a press conference yesterday that they had given Zifa an ultimatum to nullify all sanctions or face a court battle in 14 days.
“We are extremely unhappy as an organisation that people are being convicted without being tried, without being given a chance to defend themselves and without due process being followed,” reads part of Pamire’s statement.
“The bottom line is a disciplinary hearing was never conducted for anyone in this Asiagate issue and that is a violation of human rights and the rules and regulations governing such cases within Zifa or Fifa. By removing that right of people to defend themselves, Zifa have stripped them of their human rights and we feel that all sanctions pronounced by Zifa are null and void. We are giving Zifa 14 days to nullify all suspensions, fines bans, and indeed all forms of their premature punishments failure of which we will be left with no option but to seek urgent relief in the High Court…”
Pamire accused Zifa of flouting its own constitution when the board meted out disciplinary measures, something which he claimed can only be done by the Zifa Disciplinary Committee, the Appeals Committee and the Arbitration Committee.
Some players and officials who received bans ranging from 10 years to life have since appealed.