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Herald’s bias destroying soccer

THIS is a letter to you Mr Editor (of the Herald) and I hope you will publish it in the interest of all that journalism stands for. If you do not, well that it because it is your prerogative and

I will have to accept it.

Only I will think that it may confirm my suspicion of the death of real journalism in Zimbabwe today.

So here we go. Mr Editor, I honestly think that you and your journalists at the Herald have done more to kill Zimbabwean soccer in the past few months than to build it. I cannot understand how and why you can be so openly biased when reporting about soccer issues, especially on things to do with our national team and the mother of all our headaches, Zifa.

During the time of Leo Mugabe, all honest people who cared to see would have seen that Zifa was being run as a one-man band. Leo was making his own decisions in the name of Zifa and it caused much confusion in our soccer. He hired and fired people at will at Zifa House. He hired and fired club executives willy nilly at Dynamos and Zimbabwe Saints, all in the name of Zifa.

The problems Leo created persist today at these two clubs, and the PSL now has a problem of accommodating Saints next year, all because of one person.

What did your paper do then?

Your paper never really reported the issues as they should have been. I mean analytically. If anything, it merely reported speech, full stop. Even when Leo got to the stage of being booted out you just reported that he had been booted out on allegations one, two and three. Your paper never went further to analyse, evaluate or comment on the validity or otherwise of the allegations.

The mess Leo created at Zifa remains as allegation in the minds of many Zimbabweans courtesy of the Herald, and he can say that he now wants to go to CAF without batting an eyelid. How about the Nations Cup hosting that he cost us? How about the problems at Dynamos and Zimbabwe Saints that Leo created? Does all this not matter to the Herald reporter who reported that Leo is now gunning for a position in CAF?

If it does not really matter, then I suppose it also does not matter that Quinsy Jones’ father is in prison for fraud when reporting about the young man’s footballing skills. Do you see the bias I am talking about Mr Editor?

At the moment we have a deluge of biased reporting about Zifa by Robson Sharuko and company. When Rafiq Khan and company resigned from the Zifa board, the remaining members, that is Vincent Pamire and crew, could not constitute a quorum. It means they could not sit down as a properly constituted body and make decisions they were mandated to make by the Zifa council. But did your reporters ever point this out? No they have never. Not that they did not know. I know Robson, he is clever enough to know.

Now after an interim High Court ruling stopping Pamire’s elections at Zifa, your reporters have seen it fit to tell us that since the court has barred this lot from Zifa, then Westerfall and crew do not constitute a quorum, so they cannot transact anything at all. Yes, it’s true that they do not but even Pamire and company could not. Yet it was not news to you then. Why is it news now?

You see the bias Mr Editor?

The High Court has barred Pamire and crew from calling themselves Zifa or masquerading as Zifa in any way whatsoever, yet you and your reporters still refer to them as Zifa. What is wrong with you? Do you also not respect our courts? You and your guys seem to think that Zimbabwe is governed by Fifa.

Antony Mandiwanza and Aeneas Chigwedere tried to tell you that we have Zimbabwean laws to abide by first before we start talking about Fifa, but somehow you seem to think that this is nonsense, for how else can you refer to Pamire as Zifa and to Westerfall as a faction? Your bias here Mr

Editor is amazing!

Your reporters, apparently with your blessing, went further to denigrate an elected full minister of government, Cde Aeneas Chigwedere. They just fell short of calling him names. They even said the government-appointed Sports and Recreation Commission has done absolutely nothing to ensure that a whole National Sports Stadium was up to international standards.

Are you saying that CAF was right in denying us to host the Nations Cup then? Do you realise that this is exactly what you are saying in fanning your paper’s bias against some people and in favour of Pamire? Is this not destroying soccer Mr Editor?

We do not have to go to Tunisia if things are not okay at Zifa. I would rather we be booted out than go with this situation still prevailing. I also believe that Zimbabwe as a country, and not Fifa, has solutions to problems at Zifa. Just as an aside, at one point Robson Sharuko never had one kind word for Vincent Pamire. Now he cannot say one critical word about him.

Chii chaakapiwa? Watch out, pane nyaya apa!

Dr Cleopas

Sibanda (MBChB),


The letter was addressed to Herald editor Pikirai Deketeke and e-mailed on July 23.

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