Sikhumbuzo Moyo, Senior Sports Reporter
MATABELELAND North province averted an embarrassing situation of being barred from the National Association of Primary School Heads (Naph) track and field athletics competitions by settling a $15 000 affiliation debt.
The competition takes place at the National Sports Stadium in Harare today and tomorrow where a team to represent the country at the 18th edition of the Confederation of School Sport Associations of Southern Africa (Cossasa) will be selected.
Matabeleland North Naph chairperson James Daka confirmed that the arrears had now been cleared and they were now raring to go.
“Every term we need to pay about a third of the money as our affiliation fees to the national coffers and our third this time was $15 000, which I am proud to say has been paid,” said Daka yesterday. He said they had taken a 60-member team to represent Matabeleland North and they were eager to impress.
A Naph source said the timely extinguishing of the debt was a slap in the face of those that were calling for the province’s disqualification.
“There was a real danger of the province being disqualified from the competition due to the debt, although we are aware that some of those that were calling for the province’s disqualification have ulterior motives which are more political than sporting,” said the Naph source.
Chronicle Sport is reliably informed that failure by Matabeleland North Naph to settle the debt and subsequent disqualification would have seen a motion to pass a no confidence vote on Naph national president Cynthia Khumalo, who is from the province.
Khumalo heads Chinotimba Primary School in Victoria Falls and is also the chairperson of a committee of Naph and National Association of Secondary School Heads (Nash) that organises the Cossasa Games.
Zimbabwe plays host to this year’s Cossasa Games and will be seeking to win the competition for the fourth consecutive time.