By Ricky Zililo
Youth, Sport, Arts and Recreation Minister, Kirsty Coventry, has demanded that national sports associations account for funding they receive from international associations following suspected abuse that has crippled sport development.
Disgusted by bad governance, particularly at Zifa and Zimbabwe Cricket, Coventry said when sporting associations failed in their operations, they are quick to seek rescue packages from the Government, but cry interference when Government enforces accountability.
Last Sunday, Zimbabwe were embarrassingly walked over at home by Zambia in a Women’s Olympic Qualifier after the Mighty Warriors withdraw from camp hours before kick-off.
Coventry expressed disgust at the behaviour of Zifa chairman, Felton Kamambo, who she has summoned to explain the Mighty Warriors’ debacle.
Kamambo and his board have reportedly been dodging the Sports and Recreation Commission, which asked for a report on how Zifa used funds secured from the Government, Fifa and Caf for the June Afcon finals in Egypt.
However, Zifa is now seeking Government assistance to enable the Warriors to travel to Djibouti for tomorrow’s World Cup qualifier against Somalia.
Tweeting on her official page yesterday, Coventry said: “I asked the Zifa chair for a meeting to discuss the women’s qualifying debacle on Sunday; he proceeded to ask government for money for the men’s team to travel tomorrow. I have had enough of women’s sport not being taken seriously in Zimbabwe. #EqualityInSport #WomenInSport,” tweeted Coventry.
“Government took on #ZimCricket debt but told not to interfere. #Zifa once again ask for more money but government told not to interfere. This is taxpayers’ money you are ‘playing’ with. Both these associations get huge amounts of money from their international federations, where is it?
“Asking for money alone is not asking for help. You need help in restructuring everything from the ground up and I have been willing and ready (from the beginning) to work with @CAF_Online and @FIFAcom and @ICC and any other organisation to make Zimbabwe a sporting powerhouse,” she concluded.
Coventry wants these international sporting bodies to take an active role in helping weed out corrupt elements and set up structures that will ensure sport develops in Zimbabwe. The Chronicle