Football legend, Moses Chunga, says local football leaders need to be proactive and find ways for the safe resumption of the game.
The Chapungu United coach said the game was not getting the leadership it requires during these trying times.
“Right now, we are in the dark, we don’t know what is happening because nothing has been communicated to us, except the informal communication that they are waiting for the Government to give a directive,” said Chunga.
“But, the way I see it, we need to be proactive if we really want to play.
“The Government is facing many challenges, of broader national interest, and football could be their least of worries right now, unless they see the advocacy, and commitment, from the sector.
“The sad truth is that coronavirus is here to stay.
“Some countries have seen this truth, and they have found ways to play football again.
“So, if others are playing, why don’t we learn from them to see how they are doing it?
“Of course, our circumstances are not the same, but where there where there is a will there is a way.”
Tanzania recently concluded their 2019/2020 campaign and are about to start a fresh season this Sunday.
South Africa have also been playing games in a secure “bio-bubble” environment.
ZIFA had initially indicated the season would get underway this month, following recommendations from the PSL Sports Medicine Committee.
“I am not saying we should rush, and start playing, without doing thorough background checks,” said Chunga.
“We should have our clear initiatives about how we are going to go about it.
“We need to have a plan about how we are going to test the players, sanitise our venues and ensure the environment is safe for everyone.
“At least, we have to be doing something tangible on the ground. There is need to engage all the stakeholders on the way forward.
“Let’s hear what the players have to say because they are the most affected group. Most of them depend entirely on football and right now their livelihoods are shattered.
“We need to see ZIFA, the Sports Commission and the Ministry engaging and pushing forward the agenda, just like what other industries are doing.”
Chunga’s sentiments were echoed by the Premier Soccer League and the Footballers Union of Zimbabwe.
“I think that’s what those FIFA grants were for, I am sure the objective was to help clubs resume training,” said Chunga.
“ZIFA can also approach the Ministry of Health, and the corporate world, for the acquisition of coronavirus equipment.
“The problem is that we always don’t realise the magnitude of the football industry.
“We don’t take our football seriously, which is the reason why we lose to countries like Somalia.”
The 54-year-old also spoke about the fears, about his health, after his close friend, and manager, Eddie “Mboma” Nyatanga was diagnosed with coronavirus.
Nyatanga has since recovered.
“I was tested and it came out negative. But, I didn’t see the reason why I should be moving around talking about it,” said Chunga.
“I want to thank the Lord for granting me good health and for protecting me and my family during this pandemic.
“I also want to thank the community for wishing me good health. Let’s continue to adhere to the Government health and safety protocol.
“Coronavirus is a devastating disease.
“But, the good thing is we have seen some impressive recoveries around the country, which gives us hope.”