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SRC confirms ZIFA application for football resumption

by Kudakwashe Vhenge

By Trevor Makonyonga

The Sports and Recreation Commission (SRC) yesterday confirmed receiving an application for the resumption of football from ZIFA . 

In an interview with Bustop TV, SRC Acting Director General, Mr Sebastain Garikai, said they have not yet revealed which sporting disciplines have been cleared to resume sporting activities and ZIFA only made a reapplication on Tuesday, February 9.

“It is important to note that the Zimbabwe Football Association (ZIFA) only re-applied today the 9th of February 2021, at around 1100hrs. SRC will immediately activate the approval process which all associations have been advised of. As a point of clarity, the last application with regard to possible resumption of football by ZIFA to SRC was on 21 December 2020 wherein ZIFA submitted an application without the necessary protocols as is required.

“This application was subsequently affected by Statutory Instrument 10 of 2021 which led the suspension and the need for re-application. The safe resumption of any sporting activity in the country is guided by the prevailing COVID-19 regulations and policies enacted to mitigate the adverse effects of the pandemic,” said Garikayi.

He also explained how the process will go going forward giving an idea of the processes which the ZIFA application will have to go through.

“Since the inception of the lockdown in February 2020 and the subsequent partial relaxations of the same through the various Statutory Instruments issued, the Sports and Recreation Commission communicated with all NSAs with regard the application process. The law provides any person who wishes to undertake low risk sport and recreation activities must apply through SRC to the Minister of Youth, Sport, Arts and Recreation for approval.

“The requirements to be met by applicants are quite detailed under Statutory Instrument 200 of 2020. It is no guesswork.  However for the record the process is as follows: 

An NSA initiates an application for resumption. The application must detail the COVID-19 prevention and containment measures in line with WHO, Ministry of Health and Global sport guidelines.

Application is assessed by the Covid-19 Special Board Committee which meets virtually. The Committee comprises of SRC Board, Management, Epidemiologists and individuals with expertise in pandemic management and containment including sport administration. 

The Committee makes recommendations to the Minister of Youth, Sport, Arts and Recreation who in consultation with the Minister of Health and Child Care will either approve or reject the application based on the submissions made.

Then finally SRC notifies NSA of outcome.”

Various sports stakeholders including sports reporters under the banner of Sports Writers Association of Zimbabwe (SWAZ) have been lobbying for the resumption of sports, mainly football citing how its in-activeness have affected the livelihood of players.

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