HARARE – Henrietta Rushwaya and Jonathan Musavengana have written their own piece of history by becoming probably the first sporting figures in the country if not in the world to be handed life bans — twice!
The former Zifa employees were slapped with life bans for their alleged involvement in attempts to fix two 2017 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers between Zimbabwe and Swaziland in March this year.
These latest sanctions come exactly four years after the duo was also handed life bans by the old board led by Cuthbert Dube for their involvement in the Asiagate match-fixing scandal.
When the new board led by Philip Chiyangwa came into office last December they decided to pardon all those sanctioned in the Asiagate scandal.
Their fate was decided at yesterday’s Assembly meeting held at Zifa Village.
Rushwaya was alleged to be a key player in the scandal which was being orchestrated by Wilson Raj Perumal’s young brother only known as the “Chief” from his South Africa base.
The former Warriors duo of Edzai Kasinauyo and Ian Gorowa, who were also implicated in the scandal were handed 10-year bans from football while former Warriors assistant coach Nation Dube was given a five-year ban.
Football agent Kudzai Shabba was spared after he was found not guilty.
At yesterday’s meeting, the Zifa councillors also decided to dissolve the association and rebrand it to National Football Association of Zimbabwe (NFAZ).
“We have dissolved Zifa with immediate effect and will now be known as National Football Association of Zimbabwe (NFAZ),” Chiyangwa said.
“We have also ruled on those who were implicated in the match-fixing scandal and we will liaise with Fifa for endorsement.”
The association also alleges that the fixers also manipulated matches at Cosafa Castle Cup last year in South Africa and the 2016 African Nations Championships in Rwanda.
According to the details of the scandal, whistleblower Leroy Waguta played a leading role in brokering deals between Zimbabwean players based in South Africa and match-fixing cartels.
Some of the players approached by Waguta include Pretoria University goalkeeper Washington Arubi and defender Partson Jaure.
The intention was for the duo to fix Absa Premiership matches involving their club thereby ensuring huge pickings for the match fixers in South Africa.
Arubi and Jaure are reported to have turned down Waguta’s enticements.
The cartel also approached Polokwane City goalkeeper George Chigova to fix Super Diski matches but it is not immediately clear whether he turned down or went ahead with the plans.
Turning to the Warriors’ encounters against Swaziland, the match fixers had targeted Dynamos goalkeeper Tatenda Mkuruva.
They hoped to entice Mkuruva so that he would allow Swaziland to score two goals in the first leg in Mbabane on March 25.
Sihlangu were also supposed to win the reverse fixture four days later in Harare but Mkuruva alerted Warriors coach Kalisto Pasuwa.
Pasuwa and Mkuruva notified the association of the advances from the match fixers before writing and signing affidavits, which helped smoke out Waguta.