A 20-year old Ghanaian footballer who jetted into Zimbabwe 17 months ago for a ‘deal’ with yesteryear soccer giants, Shabanie Mine FC, is now regretting the move he made and now itches to return back home.
The footballer, Ishmael Dadson is said to have jetted into the country in February 2020, shortly before the Covid-19 pandemic hit the country, to undergo trials at Shabanie Mine FC.
Dadson is now stuck in the sleepy Midlands town of Zvishavane and according to an informant who spoke to the state media, the footballer has now turned to begging in the pursuit of surviving.
Said the informant:
“The boy is a graduate of an academy in Ghana called the Volta International Sports Academy (VISA) and he arrived together with another player, a goalkeeper, for trials but Shabanie Mine FC showed interest in Dadson. The other player went back home after failing to impress the Shabanie Mine FC guys”.
A one Kudakwashe Gwatirisa, who is also an official with the Chinda Boys, as Shabanie FC are affectionately known, reportedly penned an invitation letter which saw Dadson heading to the landlocked southern African country for trials.
The invitation letter stated that the trials should have started on 28 January 2020.
Dadson and other foreign players are said to have arrived in Zvishavane a few days later.
“The situation that the player finds himself in is not good at all. He stays at the club house and relies on well-wishers to give him food and toiletries. I understand that his passport was confiscated by immigration officials as his continued stay in the country is deemed illegal.
“All he wants is just to go back to his home country,” the source said.
Efforts to seek assistance from the Zimbabwe Football Association – and Footballers Union of Zimbabwe (FUZ) have hit a brick wall, according to our source.
His parent club in Ghana have also tried to reach out to Zifa for assistance but nothing has materialised. Imagine what it feels like to live in a foreign country for a year and half while surviving on handouts,” he said.
FUZ secretary general Thomas Sweswe said his office had not received communication from a club in Ghana about a player stuck in Zvishavane.
An official at the Zifa Central region – whose jurisdiction Shabanie Mine FC falls under – said their hands were tied since the player was not registered with the league.
“Our hands are tied, I think Shabanie Mine are better positioned to help the player since they invited him for trials,” said Gift Nyapomwe, the Central Region secretary for administration.
Shabanie Mine FC boss Elias Marufu said he was not aware of any player by that name.
“If he was invited for trials, supposedly with Shabanie, then he must have been dealing with an agent who must make sure that the player’s stay in the country is comfortable and lawful. It’s unfortunate that foreign players are brought into the country by agents who later abandon and leave them stranded,” said Marufu.
Zifa spokesperson Xolisani Gwesela’s cellphone was not reachable.