ZIFA president Philip Chiyangwa, his deputy Omega Sibanda and accountant Marylyn Chifamba joined the rest of leaders from the COSAFA region in Johannesburg yesterday as FIFA underlined their commitment to uplifting standards of the game on the continent by opening a regional office in South Africa.
Chiyangwa attended the function in his capacity as COSAFA president, while Sibanda and Chifamba represented ZIFA.
The inauguration of the new FIFA office was held on the sidelines of the world body’s workshop for COSAFA member associations and contrary to claims by some social media hawks, the trio of Chiyangwa, Sibanda and Chifamba’s trip was always on the cards.
Sibanda, speaking from Johannesburg, dismissed claims on social media that he had accompanied Chiyangwa to meet with FIFA officials over the pending ZIFA board elections.
The ZIFA vice president said it was mischievous for “someone to suggest that we had to urgently fly to Johannesburg to discuss the elections’’.
“If it was about elections, why would we travel with the ZIFA accountant. Everybody who follows football in the region knew about the groundbreaking of the FIFA regional office for Southern Africa and there was also a workshop on how to access FIFA Forward funds and various other topics related to development of the game,’’ Sibanda said.
In a major step forward for the development of football in Africa, FIFA announced the official opening of their second regional development office on the African continent yesterday following the official inauguration of a new office in Johannesburg.
In line with FIFA and its ongoing commitment in promoting and growing football around the world, the new regional development office in Johannesburg is providing dedicated assistance and support to member associations in the successful delivery of the FIFA Forward programme in Africa.
The inauguration was a special ceremony attended by member associations from across Africa.
And the FIFA regional development office in Johannesburg is staffed by a dedicated and experienced team of full-time development officers that work closely with 14 member associations from the COSAFA region.