Ishemunyoro Chingwere
\nTHE head of Fifa’s member associations department Primo Corvaro yesterday said jettisoning Cuthbert Dube and the Zifa board is not the panacea to the crisis bedevilling Zimbabwean football. Addressing the media after the Zifa EGM, Corvaro warned Zimbabwe to brace for tough times in the post-Dube era.

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He also confirmed that the world soccer governing body had withdrawn financial aid to Zifa over their failure to adhere to governing standards.
\nTop on Fifa’s blacklist is Zifa’s failure to submit audited financial accounts.

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“Ok, today of course you are focused on what has happened and of course it’s important . . . but the problems will stay. It’s not because you have removed the president and the problems disappear,” said Corvaro.

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“Don’t misunderstand me, I am not saying I wanted (Dube) to stay, it’s a decision of the General Assembly; they got rid of him but the problems are still there and I will say it’s even worse today.

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“The next leadership that will come will have a lot to do and especially with money . . . as it is today, Zifa is not entitled to receive Fifa money anymore until they comply with the regulations and to comply with these, one of them is to present an audit of the accounts, not only on Fifa money but on all the money including yearly accounts.

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“There will be no other support from Fifa, so the next president who is coming — the first priority for them will be to settle the debts.
\n“Not all debts, because it will be impossible, but at least the debt with the audit company in order to make sure that they can provide these documents to Fifa in order to receive some money.”

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Zifa’s auditors are said to be demanding payment of US$30 000 due to them before releasing the association’s audited accounts.
\nCorvaro, said Government’s efforts to resuscitate the 2018 World Cup dream would not bring joy and reiterated that chances of taking part in the 2022 qualifiers were also in danger unless Zifa settled its debt with former Warriors coach Tom Saintfiet

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“You know Zimbabwe can’t play World Cup 2018 qualifiers, it’s over. 2022 is at risk too. If they don’t pay this other debt with the Belgian coach (Saintfiet), 2022 is over as well, so it’s really, really worrying. The removal of Mr Dube is circumstantial I would say, it doesn’t solve the root of the problem.

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“I am not putting the blame on wherever, I am just trying to state the situation, and it’s really worrying.
\n“So again, hard times ahead, and also we hope to meet the authorities to express these worries, because if Zimbabwe won’t be able to play the qualifiers because of Fifa sanctions, then football will disappear little by little and it’s almost the case little by little.”