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1 DeMbare applaud Zifa bailout - The Standard

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DeMbare applaud Zifa bailout

MUNYARADZI MADZOKERE
DESPITE reservations from some clubs, Premier Soccer League (PSL) giants Dynamos have thrown their weight behind the recent Covid-19 relief package for top-flight teams unveiled by Zifa following an executive meeting on Thursday.

Zifa revealed that it has set aside $110,5 million from the initial US$1,5 million Fifa rescue package to be distributed among all affiliates, with the $25,6 million allocated to the PSL.

According to the country’s top football body, the assistance is meant to help clubs ease financial struggles during the coronavirus pandemic period.
DeMbare chairman Isaiah Mupfurutsa, who was reluctant to comment on the development, applauded Zifa for the bailout package.

“I did not want to comment on this matter before I get the official figures of how much we are going to get as a club,” Mupfurutsa told Standardsport.

“But if I have to be honest, any form of bailout is appreciated and I cannot complain that it is little.

“We have been operating on our own since this situation started and it has been difficult for most, if not all, clubs. “If it has been difficult, then it’s easy to appreciate any kind of assistance whether it is financial or otherwise.

“Inflation has made things all the more difficult for clubs and has made it hard for clubs to plan or budget. You realise that even when you have a sponsor you always end up needing additional income to survive.”

The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic has been devastating on PSL clubs, notably giants Highlanders and CAPS United, while DeMbare appear to be faring better, thanks to sponsors Gold Leaf Tobacco.

However, the dire situation of football clubs has been further exacerbated by the current hyperinflationary economic environment.
Zifa also allocated $32,5 million to women football while a further $17,295 million will be extended to regions, national teams, and other activities in the fight against Covid-19 and preparation for the return of competitions.

Meanwhile, Zifa is set to hold a consultative meeting with the PSL board of governors in Harare next Saturday with the contentious issue of the proposed allocations of the coronavirus relief package expected to be top of the agenda.

Zifa chief excecutive Joseph Mamutse yesterday refused to comment on the impending meeting and instead referred all questions to the association’s communication officer Xolisani Gwesela, whose mobile was not reachable.

Sources, however, told Standardsport that the league’s influential board of governors had been invited to a meeting which would be addressed by Zifa president Felton Kamambo.

Although PSL chairman Farai Jere, who is also the president of CAPS United and a member of the Zifa board, expressed satisfaction with the proposed bailout, some clubs poured scorn on the proposed package from Zifa describing it as inadequate.

The clubs are also not happy with the Zifa board’s decision to disburse the bailout in local currency.

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