Phillip Chiyangwa, the chairman of Cosafa, has slammed CAF threats to call off a planned meeting with other member associations insisting the gathering falls within FIFA’s laws of fostering unity within the football fraternity.
In an incredible rare display of daring and hubris, the President of the Zimbabwe FA hinted that the meeting will go ahead despite the threats from CAF boss Issa Hayatou.
The leader of the Council of Southern African Football Associations has called for a meeting with other African FA chairmen in Harare in Zimbabwe on 24 February with CAF Presidential Election scheduled for next month.
Jittery CAF chief Hayatou warned that the planned meeting with other member associations is “an attempt to destabilise” the governing body.
In a letter sent by Caf on behalf of president Issa Hayatou, the governing body tells Cosafa “you do not have any authority to convene such a meeting, without Caf knowledge nor without its required approval”.
It adds: “Convening a meeting with representatives of many member associations outside Cosafa zone is deemed to represent an attempt to destabilise Caf.
Caf’s warning came shortly after Cosafa announced it had unanimously endorsed Ahmad Ahmad as a presidential candidate in upcoming Caf elections.
Ahmad, currently the head of Madagascar’s FA, had already outlined his intention to challenge long-standing Caf leader Hayatou in March’s elections in Ethiopia.
CAF warned that the meeting will go contrary to the rules of the continental governing body but Chiyangwa insists the meeting is not illegal.
“I was taken aback, to say the least, by the tone of your letter and the clear insinuation that such a gathering between presidents of member associations on the African continent would be considered, outrightly, as an attempt to destabilise Caf”, Chiyangwa wrote in a reply to Caf’s warning.
He adds that Caf’s statutes “promote friendly relations between National Associations, zonal unions, clubs, officials and players” and insists the meeting is for “that very objective”.
Chiyangwa’s letter also refers to Fifa’s statues relating to the protecting of human rights which he says include “freedom of Association of member associations and zonal unions for the development and growth of the game on our continent”.
Hayatou is seeking an eight term in office. – Daily News