Zifa caught napping


REPORTS that Highlanders and Warriors midfielders Peter “Rio” Moyo, Milton Ncube and Kuda Mahachi were involved in a car accident on Sunday are another sad development in Zimbabwe’s troubled football fraternity.

The three players who were instrumental in the Warriors fairytale run at the Orange African Nations Championships in South Africa were on their way to Harare for the national team camp when the accident happened.

Zimbabwe is due to play Malawi in an international friendly match in Blantyre tomorrow.

The three players were travelling in Ncube’s Toyota Vitz vehicle when he lost control and it veered off the road just after the Kadoma Hotel and Conference Centre. Fortunately the players did not suffer any serious injuries and were treated and discharged from hospital.

However, the accident raises serious questions about how national team call-ups are handled.

Under normal circumstances the Zimbabwe Football Association (Zifa) should be in a position to guarantee the safety of players that have been called into camp by ensuring the safest travel arrangements or those outside Harare.

It would have made sense for the association to fly the players from Bulawayo by Air Zimbabwe or at the least use the luxury coaches that ply the Bulawayo-Harare route.

There has been an upsurge in road traffic accidents on Zimbabwe’s roads and during the same weekend nine people died near Chegutu when the commuter omnibus they were travelling in was involved in an accident.

The unfortunate accident points to a serious shortcoming in our football that shows we are yet to operate at a professional level.

Zifa must learn from this mistake and in future endeavour to ensure that players who report to camp are adequately catered for. The association, despite its well documented financial problems, is a respected corporate brand that should use the popularity of the sport to create partnerships that can help it discharge its administrative duties better.

Air Zimbabwe and other companies that run luxury coach services between Harare and Bulawayo could be engaged to help transport national team players to the capital whenever the need arises. Leaving the players to organise their own transport would always be fraught with risks like what happened on Sunday.