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Khan vs Sifelani

Itai Dzamara

THE battle for the Zimbabwe Football Association (Zifa) chairmanship will be between former Dynamos chairman, Morrison Sifelani and the current chairman of the Premier Socce

r League (PSL), Rafiq Khan, investigations by IndependentSport have revealed.

Sifelani has submitted his bid to the mother association and has already massively started campaigning for the top post up for grabs at the end of this month.

In his nine-page manifesto sent to Zifa and mainly targeted at the councillors, Sifelani unequivocally declares his interest in the position.

“I am pleased to offer my mature and performance-proven leadership to bring sanity and stability, especially during the crucial and momentous time ahead of Tunisia,” Sifelani said.

He also chronicled his history since the early 1960s when he was a player at Dynamos before rising to the position of chairman.

The founder chairman of the PSL, Sifelani however faces a major hurdle which he has to scale. He is said by his detractors to have been declared insolvent. The Zifa constitution bars an insolvent individual from occupying a position. However, the administrator denied the allegations and challenged anyone with evidence to prove it.

Although Khan claimed lack of interest in the position on Wednesday saying: “I am tired of the chaos in soccer”, sources revealed a plan hatched within the PSL that will culminate in Khan contesting the position on the pretence of bowing to pressure from the league. Khan however quickly added: “Maybe I will contest some day,” without elaborating.

Also interested in the chairmanship is former Caps United chair Shepherd Bwanya who, although having been persuaded by a number of people in the soccer fraternity to contest the elections, appears to be lacking the clout and campaign platform.

Bwanya couldn’t be reached for comment this week as he was said to be out of the country.

This paper also established that while still fighting tooth and nail to cling onto the position of acting chairman, embattled Vincent Pamire would chicken out of the race for the chairmanship.

It has been established that Pamire’s children staying in the United Kingdom have implored him to abandon the controversy surrounding the Zifa chairmanship and concentrate on his businesses. Pamire is understood to have indicated at a meeting for PSL and lower division clubs in Kadoma last week that he would revert back to his position of vice chairman and urged “colleagues” to contest the chairmanship.

When contacted for comment on Wednesday, Pamire said: “I haven’t made the decision. You better wait until I make the decision.”

Veteran soccer administrator, Francis Zimunya who is also chairman of the Zifa Northern Region, is playing his cards close to the chest. He has not yet confirmed his participation in the forthcoming elections for the chairmanship but is believed by insiders to be interested. He is understood to be taking his time to consider the pros and cons of contesting, especially in the event of losing.

“That will be looked into when the time comes,” said Zimunya.

Just like Pamire, Zimunya finds himself in a compromising position whereby he has to first cede his post in the Northern Region before contesting for the chairmanship. The position in the Northern Region would have gone and gone for good, leaving Zimunya in the cold in the event of failing to land the Zifa chairmanship.

The coast is therefore almost clear for the duo of Sifelani and Khan who are both riding on different platforms for campaigning.

Although riding on the power of leading the PSL, Khan’s major undoing could however be his faint heartedness in the face of politicking and canvassing for support by veterans such as Sifelani and Pamire.

The charismatic Sifelani, who is not only a veteran but also a master in the power games is ensconced in a campaign strategy. In typical cunning style, Sifelani has also endeared himself to Pamire in a move meant to secure him the constituency that Pamire still controls.

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