Mehluli Sibanda, Senior Sports Reporter
HIGHLANDERS acting chairman Modern Ngwenya says there is nothing amiss about his meeting with Zimbabwe Football Association president Philip Chiyangwa whom he met in Harare last Tuesday after the much talked about Bosso and Dynamos league match.
Ngwenya however, denied that the meeting included Dynamos chairman Kenny Mubaiwa and his Caps United counterpart Farai Jere. He also rubbished claims that he asked for a replay of the match which ended 1-1 in 90 minutes.
“It’s unfortunate and regrettable that some highly esteemed members of Highlanders would believe that I attended a meeting at Zifa offices with Zifa president Philip Chiyangwa, Dynamos President Kenny Mubaiwa and Caps President Farai Jere in which I agreed to a replay for a match that ran its course,’’ Ngwenya said.
The acting Bosso boss clarified that Chiyangwa phoned and asked him to report to his office to shed light on their grievances on the match, which he did.
“President Chiyangwa called and summoned me to his office to explain whether we had lodged our complaints or not and I told him that we lodged our complaints immediately after the match and gave the letter to the Match Commissioner. I mentioned the penalty incident, the Dynamos offside goal and the two balls that were thrown into the field of play to halt our attacks towards the end of the match. He said he would look into it,’’ Ngwenya said.
Ngwenya said Highlanders were an affiliate of Zifa, and bound by the statutes to co-operate with the football leadership in the country, though the club would not agree to any move that goes against the spirit of fair play and casts the club in bad light. He insisted that any other details being given out about the meeting are a creation of those “who have never liked him from the day he was voted as Highlanders vice chairman”.
“Any other information to what I am giving is indeed a creation of those that hated me from the day I was elected as vice-chairman at Highlanders. With such shenanigans, deep seated hatred, animosity and antagonism we can’t progress as an institution.United we stand but divided we fall. Highlanders is a big institution and I don’t make unilateral decisions. Why would Jere come to a Highlanders and Dynamos meeting? If indeed the meeting took place and I agreed to a replay how come there is no correspondence to that effect at our offices? All resolutions are sent to our offices,’’ Ngwenya said.
Highlanders members and supporters have taken to social media to blast their acting chairman for meeting with Chiyangwa where they claim he agreed to a replay of a match in which Bosso dominated their fierce rivals. Controversy started after Zifa president, Chiyangwa, who is also the chairman of the Referees Committee announced that they had cancelled a red card issued to Dynamos striker Christian Ntouba Epoupa for head-butting Bosso defender Peter Muduhwa. Chiyangwa had ruled the referee did not handle the match properly and the Dynamos striker had been “roughed up” by Highlanders defenders through out the match. However, the Premier Soccer League, which runs the league, stood its ground and Epoupa will serve his punishment.
The Highlanders acting chairman has also come under fire for the team’s poor run oflate, and the sharp differences in the technical department that led to the resignation of assistant coach Amini Soma-Phiri and demotion of Cosmas Zulu to the juniors. Club members argue “all these negative things are happening under Ngwenya’s watch”.