IF A business collapses in an already sunken economy, did it really go bust?
That’s what Zimbabweans have been asking themselves for the past 15 years as their economy has steadily shrunk. They still don’t know the answer because even as industries close around them, others crop up and close too.
The latest casualty could be CAPS United, the football club that dominated almost 30 years ago and led the way in development with the first club-affiliated academy in the country.
The Harare-based club is facing liquidation after two former directors, Lewis Uriri and Nhamo Tutisani, sought High Court intervention for unpaid debt.
The duo claim the club owes them a combined $143,000 and are demanding to be paid in three weeks or for the club to be declared insolvent and the franchise sold to settle the bill.
Although CAPS tried to reassure supporters that they are not about to fold, Uriri and Tutisani are not the only people CAPS owe.
They have already acknowledged a much larger debt, of $1.4 million to a former shareholder Farai Jere, who serves as a non-executive member of the board, and it seems they may also owe their players money.
Eight days ago, the team refused to take to the field in a game against How Mine FC to protest non-payment of salaries and bonuses. The opposition were given a 3-0 walkover win.
CAPS have since returned to action and played to a 1-1 draw against Dynamos FC, who have recently faced financial issues of their own.
Last month, the Dynamos team bus narrowly escaped being attached as part of a debt owed to a local bank. The vehicle is reportedly the only asset owned by the club.
And it’s not just the clubs that are in trouble. Zimbabwe’s national body, ZIFA, is also paying the price for defaulting on debt.
National association in trouble … ZIfa bosses Cuthbert Dube and Jonathan Mashingaidze