APOSTOLIC faith leader Madzibaba Emmanuel Mutumwa has distanced himself from Highlanders Football Club saying his association with the club caused “rifts within the Highlanders institution” and attacks on his person and church.
In a letter, Mutumwa said Johane Masowe Chishanhu Selborne Park, the church that he leads, made a decision to distance itself from Highlanders after the church came under attack for hosting Bosso senior players.
“Last year I pledged to donate cars for the Highlanders captains to incentivise them and help commit to the club I love the most. I must say all that was because of the love and the relationship that I had with the club as well as its administration. You may recall that Highlanders players and officials came to our Selbourne Park shrine to express their gratitude, the church and the club executive on the day received ‘bashing’ from certain sections of individuals within the club.
“As a church that preaches love and unity, we felt that to avoid causing rifts within the Highlanders institution, we should stay back and do what we know best, do the Lord’s work. At a time when we were called names by individuals associated with the club’s leadership, we were not protected by the club, hence members of the church felt we should stay in our lane, something we continue doing,” Mutumwa wrote.
Mutumwa let slip that he has withdrawn the pledge to buy cars for Highlanders’ three captains because of the backlash the church had to contend with.
He said: “The players and officials who came for our services were ridiculed, insulted on social media. The cars were to be a gesture from the church and after the insults we were subjected to, surely, we had to hold back and let Highlanders do its business without us dividing them. It was said that the timing of the pledge was an election gimmick, something we vehemently deny, because we were of service to the club.”
Mutumwa also revealed that Bosso officials begged him to donate food to players a few weeks ago.
“Highlanders know where to find us, actually a few weeks back they visited us seeking food aid assistance for their players and we were considering their request at the time of publishing the article about cars. We wish the new administration the best in their endeavours and may be when the dust has settled, they will come and we pursue the issue,” he said.
Highlanders media and communications officer, Ronald Moyo said the club has nothing to say on the matter. “As Highlanders Football Club we choose not to comment about that,” he said. Chronicle