Mozambican club Costa Do Sol’s abrupt decision to terminate Flames on-and-off forward Jimmy Zakazaka’s contract has sparked a protest from the player’s manager James Nelito-Pondamale.
Zakazaka, alongside fellow Flames international Chimango Kayira, signed a two-year contract with the top Mocambola League outfit just over a month ago in a deal that would have earned him almost K15 million [K7.5 million per year] as signing-on fee.
Unconfirmed reports also indicate that Zakazaka was offered an equivalent of K850 000 monthly salary, excluding other benefits.
But Pondamale yesterday said he was shocked when he got verbal communication from the club that they would terminate the contract prematurely because results of a medical test showed that the player had an injury and a cardiac problem.
“It is a very disturbing development because Jimmy had already signed a contract and if anything, the process of medical tests should have been conducted before he put pen to paper.
“There are a lot of unanswered questions here like what is the way forward since Jimmy was on a contract that was supposed to run for two years? I haven’t received anything written from the club, but in the meantime, I have suggested that he goes for second tests,” said Pondomale.
The agent further said he has already started making enquiries from behind the scenes to find out what might have happened.
“I am actually flying out to Maputo later this week to follow up on the issue,” said Pondamale.
Local-based Football Association of Malawi (FAM) licensed players agent Felix Ngamanya-Sapao said the standard rule elsewhere is that a player is only offered a contract after he successfully completes medical tests.
“In this case, if the club offered Jimmy a contract before the results, then they have to own the mistake and the consequences are they will have to pay him out,” said Sapao.
Pondamale also played down a suggestion that Costa Do Sol’s move to sign another Malawian forward Chiukepo Msowoya might have negatively affected Zakazaka’s deal since clubs are allowed to sign only five foreign players.
“Then that wouldn’t make sense because they are supposed to plan,” he argued.
Zakazaka had not responded to our questionnaire on the issue and efforts to get Costa Do Sol’s comment proved futile as their officials were reported to be in a meeting.
Apart from Zakazaka and Kayira, the other Malawian player is Moses Chavula while Chiukepo was set to sign an outright contract early this week.
Prior to his Mozambican move, Zakazaka played for South African National First Division (NFD) side FC Cape Town.