Former Warriors midfielder Edelbert Dinha has urged the Sports and Recreation Commission (SRC) to end its standoff with ZIFA to enable the Warriors to participate in the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifiers starting next month.
Zimbabwe has been suspended by Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) over government interference in ZIFA issues.
The ban means the Warriors could miss out on the Afcon qualifiers if the suspended board members led by Felton Kamambo are not reinstated.
The warring parties have two weeks to sort themselves out before the Warriors are kicked out of the qualifiers where they are billed to compete with Morocco, South Africa and Liberia for two places at the finals that will be hosted by Egypt.
The SRC, led by Gerald Mlotshwa, is unlikely to reverse its decision after Youth, Sport, Arts and Recreation minister Kirsty Coventry pointed out that the allegations of misappropriation of public funds and sexual harassment should be tested before the courts.
Dinha, a former Caps United, Ajax Cape Town, Seven Stars, Orlando Pirates and Mpumalanga Black Aces midfielder, said he was unsettled by the prospect of the Warriors missing out on the Afcon.
The 49-year-old, who is now a football agent for Shumba Sports Management in South Africa, said:
It is sad (the prospect of missing out on Afcon), but the SRC also wants to see order at ZIFA and that is why they went ahead with the suspension.
At the end of the day, football administrators and the SRC must sit down and fix whatever needs to be fixed so that the people of Zimbabwe can enjoy watching their team playing in major tournaments.
Dinha, who was part of the 2006 Warriors team that competed at Afcon in Egypt, said it is every player’s dream to play for his country but the management of finances “can be a stumbling block to them.”