By Darlington Gatsi
FINANCIALLY hamstrung City of Harare has with immediate effect stopped funding its football team – Harare City – pending an internal audit.
This was passed through a council resolution Tuesday with Harare Mayor Jacob Mafume citing irregularities in the football club’s operations.
Harare City oversees both men and women’s teams with the latter being in the topflight league.
In passing the resolution, Mafume cast doubt on any prospects of funding the team.
“All funding will cease with immediate effect until such anomaly is corrected. When an interim executive will be put in place to conduct and also consider whether it is necessary to keep funding a football club at this point. It might not be necessary but we have to look into that.
“An audit must also be instituted as to the use of funds that they have been given. For the avoidance of doubt the people that have been relieved are the current executive and even its secretariat,” said Mafume.
The City fathers appear to have bowed down to pressure from residents to wean off the football club which they argue is not the responsibility of the council.
Residents said Harare City football club was draining council funds which should have been channelled towards improving service delivery.
At one point Harare City football Club required more than half a million United States dollars annually.
The move by Harare City Council threatens to put the football club in the dustbin of history.
“Our mayoral mansion where that club is housed must as of immediate effect be returned back to the city and municipal police must be put there,” added Mafume.