THE new Dynamos Football Club board elected last month says it was unlawfully being blocked from taking control of the club because it wants to introduce accountability in the way the club is run.
On June 7 the Dynamos electoral college, a grouping of the club’s former players that act as the club’s supreme policy and decision-making board, dissolved the board of directors led by Richard Chiminya, replacing it with the one led by club legend George Shaya.
The Chiminya faction has however refused to step down citing some technicalities.
This week the Shaya splinter board said the refusal to vacate office by the Chiminya board was illegal and in defiance of the club’s constitution.
Spokesman and splinter board treasurer, Isidore Sagwete, dismissed claims that its battle was motivated by greed as Dynamos is set to receive US$100 000 for their participation in the mini-league phase of the African Champions League.
“That is an unashamed lie,” Sagwete said. “The Champions League is not the beginning and end of Dynamos Football Club. Those who are saying that are missing the bigger picture. The Champions League is but one stage in the future of Dynamos. If it was not for the George Shaya’s executive that worked flat out to deliver Dynamos’ first domestic league championship in a decade, would there be the Africa Champions League to talk about now? These guys are just a few months into the job and are riding on the foundation laid by Shaya. They were nowhere to be seen when we were battling to win the league after such a long time. So who are the gatecrashers now?”
Sagwete said Shaya’s name was being thrown in mud by the rival group to discredit him and his new team.
Before being elevated to board chairman, Shaya was Dynamos’ executive chairman up to the end of last season, but was replaced together with his whole executive after the club ruled that board members could not serve on the executive. A new executive, chaired by Partson Moyo, was appointed.
Sagwete said: “Everyone knows George Shaya’s credentials, and unfortunately he is being tarnished for selfish reasons. In contrast, what are the credentials of the so-called current executive? Certainly they don’t compare favouribly with Shaya’s”.
The Shaya group claims Chiminya’s ousted board was using an “irrelevant” clause of the club constitution, Article 5.1.2, to cling to power: “The board shall hold office for a period of three years at the end of which they will automatically vacate office but shall be eligible for re-election. In the event of a vacancy in the board of trustees caused by resignation or death the electoral college shall elect a replacement who runs office for the remainder of the term in question”, it reads.
This clause, the Shaya group says, is cancelled out by Article 5.1.3 of the constitution, which reads: “The board of trustees is the supreme law and authoritative policy organ for the Dynamos institution.
No other organisation or body has power over it on matters relating to the structure and organisation of the club. The decision of the board of trustees can only be changed by a meeting of the electoral college convened for that purpose”.
In fact, the group claims that some members of the Chiminya board, who were incorporated into the new board, accepted the appointments and are loyal to the new dispensation.
The group also claims that the suspension of the new board’s secretary, Ernest Kamba, and treasure Sagwete, which the Chiminya group says renders unlawful the electoral Ccollege meeting that ousted it, does not bind as the suspension was not endorsed by the electoral college.
Meeting minutes to hand shows the suspension issue was initially set as an agenda for discussion at the June 7 meeting, but was not adopted following a vote. Sagwete claims the suspension was “a one-man decision”.
The minutes also show that Chiminya, who was included in the new board, participated in the meeting, and no objections were made.
Sagwete said the new board would clear the club of “unwanted elements” once in full control.
“We want to account for every cent that is going in and out of the club”, he said. “The new board has been tasked by the electoral college to find out who financed the Tunisia trip (for an Africa Champions League match) and how they are going to be paid back. There are several issues. We also want to know why complimentary tickets were being sold at Champions League match against Costa De Sol. That is why the board has faced a lot of resistance because we’ve brought the issue of accountability. We are asking pertinent questions”.
However, the Dynamos lawyer for the Chiminya faction, Herbert Mutasa, said the removal of the board was not “legally sustainable”.
He said: “The board was given a new term in September 2007, and according to the constitution, it is supposed to be in office for three years. The electoral college has no constitutional powers to evoke that.
Constitutionally the electoral college cannot pass a vote of no confidence in the board. If you look at the petition that circulated calling for the Electoral College meeting, it didn’t say it was being convened to pass a vote of no confidence. Its resolution was to oppose the extension of the term of the board.
The electoral college indeed is the supreme policy-making of the club, it even has powers to amend the constitution, but before it has done that it cannot overrule the very constitution it safeguards”.
By Enock Muchinjo