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Blame game over Mutuma signing takes centre stage: Confusion engulfs Highlanders

By Ricky Zililo and Raymond Jaravaza

Confusion has enveloped Highlanders over striker Rodrick Mutuma, with the club’s executives blaming each other for the failure to finalise his capture yesterday.

Former Dyanamos strike Rodrigue Mutuma (left) claps hands during his introduction to the Highlanders camp he has recently joined at Barbourfields satdium yesterday, introducing him is the Highlanders Welfare Manager Mr Cosmas Zulu (right) and other foreighn players for Bosso from CANADA….Pic By Dennis Mudzamiri…

The temperamental former Dynamos striker has been training with Bosso and his camp agreed to the terms and conditions set by the Highlanders’ executive, which met yesterday morning to deliberate on the player.

However, by last night Mutuma’s camp said they were still hanging around the city centre waiting to conclude negotiations with Highlanders’ treasurer Donald Ndebele.

“We’re ready to sign and we’ve been waiting for the Highlanders’ treasurer (Donald Ndebele) since 4PM.

They asked for Mutuma’s bank details and we gave them.

They’ve also asked for a clearance letter from Dynamos, which indicates that Mutuma is a free agent and we’ve arranged with his wife to pick it up from Dynamos tomorrow,” said the player’s agent Carlos Tavengwa.

He said all along they had been communicating with Highlanders’ acting chairman Modern Ngwenya and were hoping to seal the deal in the presence of Ndebele.

Ndebele said they agreed at an executive meeting that Ngwenya was going to meet Mutuma’s camp and brief them about the club’s terms and conditions regarding the deal.

“The acting chairman (Ngwenya) was given the mandate to tell them the terms and conditions we agreed on after the coach told us that he wants the player. Unfortunately I can’t tell you that information because it is confidential.

“If they have agreed to the terms, then it means we’ve a deal and they should have signed the contract presented by the acting chairman. I’m yet to get a briefing from the acting chairman on how the meeting with Mutuma went,” said Ndebele.

Upon being told that Mutuma’s camp was insisting that the ball is in Highlanders’ court and they were waiting for Ndebele to pitch up, the Bosso treasurer said: “I’m not running away from them because I was in the office from 11AM to 3PM.

“I left to attend some pressing business matters and that is why the acting chairman was given the mandate to be the bearer of what we agreed on. Actually the acting chairman can sign the contract and then I counter sign tomorrow when they come to pick up their copy.”

Ngwenya told reporters at the club’s weekly press conference last Thursday that the executive would meet to decide whether or not to sign Mutuma.

However, repeated efforts to reach Ngwenya for comment were fruitless as his mobile phone rang unanswered.

Even Ndebele told Chronicle Sport yesterday that Ngwenya was not picking up his calls.

The delay in closing the deal with Mutuma might frustrate the player.

Bosso coach Erol Akbay has indicated that he wants Mutuma in his quest to lead Highlanders to their first championship since 2006.

The arrival of Mutuma could add another dimension to Highlanders’ attack, which has Prince Dube, Ralph Matema, Nhlanhla Ndlovu and Gabriel Nyoni competing for starting places. The Chronicle