HARARE – The return of Mr Zimbabwe after five years of absence was welcomed with relief, but one of the talking points has been the rewarding of $200 for the overall champion.
While most people have commended the national association, the National Federation of Zimbabwe Body Building and Fitness (NFZBBF), for holding a memorable show at the Harare International School in Mt Pleasant on November 2, the association has come under fire for the measly financial rewards.
At a time when another private bodybuilding show, Musclemania Zimbabwe, awarded attractive prizes such as a VW Polo car, residential stands and household goods, Mr Zimbabwe winner Champion Chienderamwano walked away with a paltry $200.
Chienderamwano few months ago drove off in a VW Polo vehicle after dislodging Victor Hungwe as Musclemania 2013.
Former Zimbabwe Mr Iron Man, Collin Mushunje, who is now retired, ignited the debate on the country’s official bodybuilding Facebook page.
“Don’t think the national association has done gud (sic) at all, they brought Mr Zim and Ironman bek (sic) yes, but I feel sorry for ordinary athletes who are being used for fame to make these guys pockets fat. How can u explain paying an overall winner for Mr Zim $200,” wrote Mushunje.
“It’s always good to call a spade a spade, Mr Zim is not a one man band, we as stakeholders need transparency in everything from the sponsorship package, budget and all the prizes that were given to athletes, we demand a full audited report on this.”
Former Mr Musclemania, Victor Hungwe, who is preparing for the World Championship to be held in Italy next month, said the national association had failed dismally.
“This is no direct attack to anyone but just straight talk, the current leadership of NFZBBF has failed dismally. How can you justify giving Mr Zim $200, totally utter nonsense,” Hungwe said.
ZBN president Ottis Goredema however, said that he was ready to step down given an acceptable alternative.
“While I am happy to continue to serve in this capacity in a formal committee, I'm also quite happy to hand it over to those who feel they are more capable. I lose nothing as I went into personal debt to invest in the show, since I was thinking of the long term benefits of a quality show,” he said.