By Eddie Chikamhi
HARARE- Life is expected to return to normal in the Dynamos camp after the Harare giants agreed yesterday to re-engage Callisto Pasuwa on a three-year deal, and end tensions that have been mounting after negotiations for a new contract with the championship-winning coach had broken down last week.
Pasuwa was supposed to put pen to paper yesterday in a new development that will effectively put the turmoil to rest following mediation efforts by Moses Chunga’s Zimbabwe Soccer Coaches Union.
Dynamos had announced this week that they were looking for a new man to lead the team and even flighted advertisements in the Press to fill the position, but the club’s chairman Kenny Mubaiwa revealed that they had agreed to go for Pasuwa in a longer deal.
The Dynamos executive convened in Harare yesterday and were supposed to engage the former DeMbare midfielder and ZSCU leader Moses Chunga afterwards, but Pasuwa could not make it for the meeting.
Mubaiwa said he was confident the club would now move forward after settling the contentious issue that had almost hampered their pre-season build-up. “We will go for him. As we have always said, the executive had no problem with Pasuwa continuing as our coach.
“That is why we made all that effort to negotiate with him, but it’s unfortunate we reached a point where we felt we could not break the impasse and we had chosen another route.
“But the members of the executive agreed we will go for him when we discussed the matter today (yesterday) as a follow up to what we discussed with Chunga on his behalf,” said Mubaiwa.
Pasuwa’s contract with the Glamour Boys will run out tomorrow and negotiations for a longer deal had collapsed after the parties reached an impasse on the salary figures.
Pasuwa was not available for comment yesterday but both Chunga and Mubaiwa were confident that the matter would be put to rest and allow the coach to move ahead with preparations for the new season.
The former Dynamos midfielder was installed in the hot seat in August, replacing his close friend Lloyd Mutasa who seemed to have hit a plateau after a series of middling results in a tough season.
Pasuwa then led the club to a remarkable fightback to lift the league championship they last won four years ago and capped a fine season by clinching the inaugural Mbada Diamonds Cup.
But lately his future at the club had been shrouded in doubt after the club advertised the position in the newspapers this week after failing to agree on a fresh deal.
Dynamos had vowed they would not renew his contract but they seem to have backtracked after a series of diplomatic manoeuvres, which sucked in Chunga’s ZSCU.
However club chairman Mubaiwa revealed that the Dynamos executive had not altered their position on the sticky issue over the salary figures, which had led to the break down of the negotiations, and indicated that the coach had agreed to take up their offer of US$3 000.
Pasuwa had proposed a monthly pay of US$4 000, which DeMbare said was outside their means, and the negotiations collapsed despite having reached common ground on virtually all the other areas in the contract.
“There are no changes to what we offered him and let me clarify that we are not starting to negotiate with him anew. We made our position clear and he is only left to sign.
“If what we discussed with Chunga is anything to go by, then we could have already finalised everything and by now he should have signed a new contract.
“It’s unfortunate he was not able to attend the meeting. He excused himself to attend to a sick relative but we are all happy with the new development,” said Mubaiwa.
Dynamos executive member Webster Chikengezha said they had never doubted Pasuwa’s capabilities but the only sticking issue was the salary figure he demanded which they felt was too high.
“It’s not like we didn’t like Pasuwa to continue as our coach. If that was the case we could have gone ahead and recruited a new person since we knew his contract was expiring on December 31.
“We could not have waited until this late but the decision to advertise the post was out of desperation because we could not reach an agreement with him. According to the operations budget of the team, we had only offered Pasuwa what we can afford to pay.
“We wouldn’t want to promise a salary that we cannot manage even in the first month. We only wanted to be realistic and stand by what we can deliver even if our sponsors do not increase their support.
“It’s important to realise that a salary is a fixed cost that should be paid on the day promised and we cannot rely on gate-takings for that,” said Chikengezha.
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