ZIMBABWE Football Association (Zifa) President and Zanu PF loyalist Philip Chiyangwa has scorned those opposed to his intended return to active national politics as he inadvertently revealed plans of one-day seeking to become FIFA president.
The former Chinhoyi legislator and ex-Zanu PF Mashonaland West chairman recently revealed plans to contest the same parliamentary seat under the ruling party.
The decision has invited condemnation from some locals who felt politicians have no place in a non-partisan occupation like sports.
But Chiyangwa, who is also Cosafa president, defiantly dismissed the comments saying he was not the only politician in the world who was running the popular sport.
“Ahmad (Ahmad, Madagascar), before he became CAF president, he was the Deputy Speaker of Parliament for many years, muno ndomune noise yemanga-manga (only in Zimbabwe do people make an issue out of it).
“The Burundian Speaker of Parliament is the FA president, the Palestinian Minister of Sport is the FA President, the Morocco Minister of Finance is the FA president. Ukaona ndaita MP siyana neni (please leave me alone).”
HE continued; “In the Egyptian Football Federation, four MPs rule their football.”
“The national constitution of Zimbabwe does not stop people from doing that.
“But ndiri serious panyaya yehuMP, uko ndakabata Zifa neCosafa; ha, nditori vice president weCAF, ndotongosiya ndaita FIFA president. (I am serious about being MP. I am in charge of Zifa and Cosafa president same time; I am also Caf vice president. I will only leave politics when I become FIFA president).
Chiyangwa made the comments during a light-hearted chat with Sports Minister Makhosini Hlongwane just before the two had a joint press conference in Harare last Thursday.
The conversation was made just when journalists’ recorders had started running when the two politicians, together with FC Barcelona legend Rayco Garcia, had sat down in preparation for the press briefing.
The controversial property tycoon said he had no problems about being placed on record regarding his political and FIFA ambitions.