The Sunday Mail
There were attempts to disqualify my candidacy, on the eve of the election, a move which was thwarted by Zifa but that’s all water under the bridge now.
It’s time to mend the bridges and forge a way forward.
Beach soccer has been dormant for the last seven years and I think now is the time to move the game forward.
Yes, I was part of the previous executive as Joseph Musariri’s vice president and people will ask what change I can bring to a system that I was part of in recent years.
Well, there was nothing much I could do as the vice president because I was not the captain of the ship.
Now I have the mandate and I am saying we are now moving forward.
How do we move forward?
We need to spread beach soccer to all corners of Zimbabwe, to all the 10 provinces and to schools because without the grassroots there is no future.
The world governing body FIFA has funds reserved for beach soccer development but those funds could not be availed to Zimbabwe because we had no proper structures.
Once we put in place a working system, then FIFA will release the development funds.
To that end, I pledge to establish a working committee that will help in the day to day running of the game in Zimbabwe.
The country has to participate in international tournaments, we need to be in touch with other countries where beach soccer is vibrant, especially Western African countries and borrow one or two notes from them.
It’s possible because FIFA are prepared to help us.
However, it all has to begin with the laying down of a proper foundation, that is taking the game to the people.
Zimbabwe has the capacity to become a beach football powerhouse once we establish venues across the country.
We have a lot of dry areas in Zimbabwe, all those river beds can be turned into spectacular venues.
The ideas are there and we can do a lot for this game.
Beach soccer has the capacity to even boost our tourism industry.
In the resort town of Kariba they already have a sand beach which can be converted into a wonderful venue.
The plan is to take the sport to resort areas like Kariba and the majestic Victoria Falls so that visitors can also enjoy the game whilst on holiday.
At grassroots level, we have plans to work with both the National Primary School Heads and National Association of School Heads so that we create a platform for the development of beach soccer in schools.
What’s important here is not talk but implementation.
And it can all go according to plan if we work together as a united people and take this exciting game forward.
We need to generate interest, make noise and lure a lot of people to this sport.
Above all, beach soccer is not just fun, it can be turned into a massive business enterprise that can also generate a lot of jobs and foreign currency for the country.
New Beach Soccer president Marshall Jonga spoke to Sunday Mail reporter Langton Nyakwenda soon after his election into office last Friday.