By Sikhumbuzo Moyo in BULAWAYO
ZIFA have flashed a yellow card to the Premier Soccer League and ordered the country’s elite league to stop instituting disciplinary proceedings over their members as such action can only be done by the mother body in compliance with FIFA regulations.
The situation in Zimbabwe has been unique compared to other leagues in the world as the PSL have literally set up parallel football judiciary structures like the disciplinary committee which are in violation of the ZIFA constitution.
Stung by the Premiership’s audacious bid to haul Chicken Inn coach, Rahman Gumbo, a disciplinary hearing for allegedly causing the abandonment of the Chibuku Super Cup first round match between the GameCocks and Yadah Stars at Ascot last month, ZIFA have issued a ‘reminder’ to the PSL that coaches, like referees, fall under their wings.
“It is the ZIFA technical development committee that has the duty of licensing coaches, players and administrators and thus all disciplinary issues concerning coaches are, and should be handled by the association’s relevant judicial bodies, and not the league,’’ ZIFA said in a statement.
“Premier Soccer League officials are therefore mandated to respect and observe football protocol.”
In their summons to Gumbo, signed by the league’s chief executive Kennedy Ndebele, the PSL acted after receiving the referee’s report, which was out of order because referees fall under the ZIFA Referees Committee.
Yesterday, ZIFA chief executive Joseph Mamutse wrote a strongly-worded letter to Ndebele in which the association put the record straight that football grievances must be referred to the national body for redress.
“ZIFA has noted with concern persistent chaos emanating from poor management of PSL matches and disregard of ZIFA Standing Committee and authority,’’ Mamutse wrote.
“The mandate of the PSL is to manage matches smoothly and the ZIFA constitution clearly states that ZIFA is in charge of Association Football and no one else.
“The Association, through its standing committee, will look into issues of coaches and referees, clubs in the PSL are members of ZIFA (and) hence cannot conduct disciplinary hearings at that level.
“It is therefore ZIFA’S mandate to handle grievances of refereeing, coaching and competition through its committees. We currently have parallel structures in football which renders it confusing as to who is responsible for presiding over these issues.
“PSL should respect football protocol and authority of ZIFA and should, therefore, desist from forming parallel football structures.’’ The Chronicle