ZIFA president Cuthbert Dube yesterday presented his 2014 Zifa Assembly elections manifesto in which he made pledges to move forward all projects he started in his first tenure while launching new ones that would ensure progress in the national game.
Dube is seeking reelection in the elections that will be held at the Zifa Village tomorrow where he will contest against Leslie Gwindi, Trevor David Juul and Nigel Munyati.
The Village is one of his success stories at the helm of local football where among other facilities an artificial turf, lodgings and a conference centre are provided.
In his manifesto Dube admits shortcomings in some areas during the last four years, particularly the failure to attract sponsorship which he attributed to the Asiagate match-fixing scandal, failure by national teams to qualify for major tournaments, non-fulfillment of some matches due to lack of funding as well as inability to pay for audit fees which resulted in the reports being withheld.
But he also points out to a long list of success which includes Fifa president Sepp Blatter’s visit to Zimbabwe, unearthing of Asiagate, his appointment to the Fifa Standing Committee — a first by any Zimbabwean, appointment to Caf committees, qualification and success at the Chan tournament, revival of women’s football, production of audited accounts, and the successful lobbying of Fifa to avail funds for the construction of new Zifa headquarters.
Dube announced yesterday Zifa had secured land for the construction of new offices along Airport road where they will establish Zifa, Premier Soccer League (PSL) and Football Trust offices as well as a hotel to generate funds for the association.
Despite reports of an “obscene” salary he is alleged to have earned during his time at Psmas which is substantially indebted to service providers, Dube said he still retains the confidence of the business community he is sure will avail sponsorships in his second tenure.
“I will not say much about those (huge salary) reports, what I can say is that those are satanic verses and I will respond when the time comes,” said Dube at his manifesto launch ceremony. “Business knows what is happening, it’s all politics and I still retain their confidence. I will speak about this issue after the elections and when I do I will shame some people and they will be quiet for good.”
Dube said he had done well in business in transforming Psmas into a thriving medical aid society, having taken over a company that was threatened with collapse adding that his vision is to have as much success in football.
“I have done a lot for Psmas; when I took over it had just about 43 000 members, now it has 802 000 members, it is the biggest in Southern Africa. PSMI is one of my success projects, when I suggested its establishment it was met with resistance but now it is the biggest health service provider in the country and has grown as well as spreading into Zambia. I am a man of integrity and I have done well in football as well and wish to continue with
the projects I started. I deserve a second chance.”
In his football related promises Dube pledges to resuscitate the Zifa Cup, enable further growth of the PSL, growth of women’s football to become a source of livelihood, prioritisation of junior development as well as putting in everything to ensure qualification to the Afcon 2015, World Cup 2018 and women’s World Cup finals.
He said he had already started negotiating with local authorities for the provision of land to build Zifa provincial offices.
The elimination of the Zifa debt which is in excess of US$ 5million — most of which his board inherited — is also prominent in his list of pledges.
Responding to allegations of vote buying Dube said it would not make sense for him to bribe his way into an institution where he would pump in more funds.