Former Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC) chairman Wilson Manase has fired a salvo at the Sport and Recreation Commission (SRC), accusing the sports controlling body of being unprofessional.
BY OUR STAFF
Manase was recently slapped with a four-year ban for allegedly commandeering the cricket team to tour Pakistan in May, disregarding the ruling by SRC not to do so.
According to the outcome of the ruling, ZC was accused of “undertaking an unauthorised sports tour of Pakistan”.
“It’s as though the SRC has a personal vendetta against me. I say so because in the first place, as clearly shown by the ruling, the entity which was charged was ZC and there was never any substitution of ZC to have Manase as the accused party,” he told Standardsport.
Manase said the ruling by the SRC disciplinary committee said he was the head of the ZC team during the tour. Ozias Bvute was the head of the delegation.
“One can clearly see that there was an ulterior motive by the disciplinary committee, moreso its chairperson [Aisha Tsimba-Nyamweda],” he said.
Tsimba-Nyamweda is also a commissioner at SRC, which means that she could have been conflicted to hear the case by virtue of SRC being the complainant.
This also comes as it emerged that correspondence has been flying between Manase and SRC over the manner in which the sports controlling body had handled the matter and leaked the ruling to the press before giving it to the affected parties.
In a December 2 letter to SRC director-general Charles Nhemachena, Manase said “he found it odd and bordering on the absurd that a ruling meant for me is published in the press before I get notification of”.
“While I am asking for copy by return, I am left to wonder what is contained in the ruling, it is factually incorrect. A body like yours has to be professional. I hasten to mention that your actions therefore leave a lot to be desired,” said Manase.
In reply Nhemachema said “it was regrettable that the matter was published in the press before you had sight of the ruling”.
“I can confirm that a copy was sent to Zimbabwe Cricket and that at no stage did we release the information in any form to the press, or to anyone else for that matter.”
“We, however, apologise for any inconvenience caused by the manner in which communication on this matter was handled,” he wrote.
Fresh details emerged yesterday that the decision to tour Pakistan was unanimously agreed to by the ZC board at its meeting on May 8.
At the meeting, Manase told board members that Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Shaharyar Khan had requested countries to tour Pakistan.
“Zimbabwe also needed more game time in order to become competitive. Kenya had toured Pakistan already,” the board minutes said. PCB, according to the minutes, would meet all the costs in addition to paying all the players and officials. The minutes said the players had agreed to tour.
“The board unanimously agreed that Zimbabwe should tour Pakistan,” the minutes said.
After the tour, ZC met then Sports and Culture deputy minister Tabitha Kanengoni-Malinga to explain the reasons for touring Pakistan.
Kanengoni-Malinga told ZC to liaise with the parliamentary portfolio committee on Sports and Culture, then chaired by Tapiwa Matangaidze. Matangaidze is now the Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare deputy minister. ZC also met then Sports minister Andrew Langa to explain its reasons for travelling to Pakistan.