Shawwal Bagaria 1st Dan Black Belt South African 17-year-old Women’s Champion.

Having met this pretty shy young lady for lunch at our home in South Africa, I was amazed at how radiant she became as her eyes sparkled when I asked the question, “So could you pin me down on the mat in your discipline (Judo) “

The transformation from the Mona Lisa curiosity smile to a beam that lit her face was astounding.

She became a hive of information as I asked further questions on ‘do and not do’ during a match, refereeing and regulations, the type of holds and throws and point scoring system, and in between, this sleek panther-like young lady nibbled at the culinary my wife had on array.

While many young people of her age are in dissipation, this affable 17-year-old breathes life into the art and adage of “The gentle way.”
Temperance, behavioral balance, morality, deeds, and discipline come in Fatima’s combination (Shawwal’s mother) and Shawwal’s.

Having said all that, Shawwal is very independent as well as focused in all she does.

Picture showing Shawwal skilfully tossing an opponent onto the mat.

A hint of sadness touched the corners of her lips when her Mum, a good friend of ours, indicated to us while we were dining that this is a sport that is not so well supported by the government. The parents have to raise funds for their judokas to compete internationally.

I take pleasure and opportunity in introducing one of our fine and new diasporan family to our magazine. Shawwal.
This name means the tenth month of the Islamic lunar calendar. Shawwal stems from the verb ‘to lift or carry’ in Arabic. How befitting is that for our judoka?

Shawwal Bagaria 1st Dan Black Belt South African 17-year-old Women’s Champion.

Picture of Shawwal in the middle.

Having met this pretty shy young lady for lunch at our home in South Africa, I was amazed at how radiant she became as her eyes sparkled when I asked the question, “So could you pin me down on the mat in your discipline (Judo) “

The transformation from the Mona Lisa curiosity smile to a beam that lit her face was astounding.

She became a hive of information as I asked further questions on ‘do and not do’ during a match, refereeing and regulations, the type of holds and throws and point scoring system, and in between, this sleek panther-like young lady nibbled at the culinary my wife had on array.

While many young people of her age are in dissipation, this affable 17-year-old breathes life into the art and adage of “The gentle way.”
Temperance, behavioral balance, morality, deeds, and discipline come in Fatima’s combination (Shawwal’s mother) and Shawwal’s.

Having said all that, Shawwal is very independent as well as focused in all she does.

Picture showing Shawwal skilfully tossing an opponent onto the mat.

A hint of sadness touched the corners of her lips when her Mum, a good friend of ours, indicated to us while we were dining that this is a sport that is not so well supported by the government. The parents have to raise funds for their judokas to compete internationally.

I take pleasure and opportunity in introducing one of our fine and new diasporan family to our magazine. Shawwal.
This name means the tenth month of the Islamic lunar calendar. Shawwal stems from the verb ‘to lift or carry’ in Arabic. How befitting is that for our judoka?

On behalf of Shawwal, I humbly ask any of you well wishers to telephone her Mum on the numbers below on the curriculum vitae below. Read on

Shawwal Bagaria 1st Dan Black Belt South African 17-year-old Women’s Champion.

Picture of Shawwal in the middle.

Having met this pretty shy young lady for lunch at our home in South Africa, I was amazed at how radiant she became as her eyes sparkled when I asked the question, “So could you pin me down on the mat in your discipline (Judo) “

The transformation from the Mona Lisa curiosity smile to a beam that lit her face was astounding.

She became a hive of information as I asked further questions on ‘do and not do’ during a match, refereeing and regulations, the type of holds and throws and point scoring system, and in between, this sleek panther-like young lady nibbled at the culinary my wife had on array.

While many young people of her age are in dissipation, this affable 17-year-old breathes life into the art and adage of “The gentle way.”
Temperance, behavioral balance, morality, deeds, and discipline come in Fatima’s combination (Shawwal’s mother) and Shawwal’s.

Having said all that, Shawwal is very independent as well as focused in all she does.

Picture showing Shawwal skilfully tossing an opponent onto the mat.

A hint of sadness touched the corners of her lips when her Mum, a good friend of ours, indicated to us while we were dining that this is a sport that is not so well supported by the government. The parents have to raise funds for their judokas to compete internationally.

I take pleasure and opportunity in introducing one of our fine and new diasporan family to our magazine. Shawwal.
This name means the tenth month of the Islamic lunar calendar. Shawwal stems from the verb ‘to lift or carry’ in Arabic. How befitting is that for our judoka?

On behalf of Shawwal, I humbly ask any of you well wishers to telephone her Mum on the numbers below on the curriculum vitae below. Read on

On behalf of Shawwal, I humbly ask any of you well wishers to telephone her Mum on the numbers below on the curriculum vitae below. Read on



I think the world is forgetting one big question regarding ‘the hand of God comment by Maradona. Allow me to explain why I write about this because I was a young lad who still vividly remembers a war between Argentina and Britain in April 1982.

Maradona, a cocaine sniffing addict, a football genius who brought poetry into what ‘Pele’ describes soccer as the beautiful game, outspoken and defiant with a hint of superiority yet revered as a hero worldwide, is dead at age 60 on the 25th of November 2020. 

How does this tally up with the war between Britain and Argentina for the Falkland Islands?

Well. Famous for mugging, if not pickpocketing England out of the quarter-finals of the world cup in Mexico 1986. Maradona, the Argentinian during the game, jumped up and illegally used his hand to score against Peter Shilton of England in what looked like a header. There was no digital VAR (Video Assist Referee), and as much as the English team protested, the goal stood as the referee, and his linesmen did not see the flash of the ‘Hand of God’ 

The Final score 2-1 to Argentina.

After the game, this is how Maradona described his goal as ‘The hand of God,’ and you could hear the frenzied clickety-clack of typewriters as the world published his comment.

The fact that the Argentinian said -” it seemed like a way of telling England, ‘stuff you,’ we have not forgotten how you defeated us during the Falkland war.” A war that was still fresh in the hearts and minds of the Argentinians.

The British fought for the possession of a worthless little Island off the coast of Argentina. 

 They wanted to build a naval depot base as this Island supposedly belonged to Britain. Argentina thought differently.

For Maradona and his ‘Hand of God’ utterance, this was a jibe and a provoking statement that our former Lords and Masters (Colonialist) Britain could not accept.

The yob, the petty-bourgeois, and the nobility of Great Britain were incensed. ‘Cheat’ the English speaking countries spat out their hatred for Maradona in the press. Smug haters of England, including Argentina, were hero-worshipping the cheat.

Without a doubt, Maradonna was the most skillful, sure-footed dribbler, fast, elegant, and a schemer of vision during play and most loved footballer of his era. Forget Pele as this was not his era. Therefore you cannot compare Maradona to Pele, Beckham, Messi, Ronaldhino, Ronaldo, Baggio, Cryuff, or Best as all these great players were of a different time.

Till today you can hear the cockney say over a beer about Maradona, “e was great, gret, (great-great) but e was eh pleat (cheat-pleat)  

Rest in Peace Legend, you were great, and you were a free spirit



Use of certain football players clarification needed

OP-ED by Charles White

Use of certain football players clarification needed.

Mismanagement, insufficient research, misinformation, external influence, and interference are just the tip of the iceberg on the level of fairness that ZIFA cannot and should not be left to flourish as we witness another disruption of football corridors in Zimbabwe.

First, the Under 17 Zimbabwe football team was suspended from participating in the COSAFA tourney held in South Africa for attempting to play an over-aged player. On top of that, a player was selected for the National Team from Bradford City Division 2 league development squad.

That player in particular named in the National Team of the Under 17 from the development squad is Tapuwa Chakuchichi.

Had someone from ZIFA seen this lad play before? Was there even a letter from ZIFA inviting this player to represent the under 17 National Team with a ZIFA stamp and signature? Can someone in ZIFA clarify if this player is on the books with his English club and registered with a thriving club in Zimbabwe BN Academy? Was he cleared by the FA to be regarded as a BN Academy player? This is irregular to have a player being used in the National Team registered to a club in England and Zimbabwe.

The reason I bring this up is that why should ZIFA accommodate these problems.? Why not just say he is from the development stage of an English Team? The development stage in English football is the pits of football within the academies. No disrespect intended but these are learners.

Who paid for his ticket? Was it his parent or guardian who paid for the ticket? Is ZIFA going to allow any player from overseas to represent Zimbabwe because his parents or guardians can afford to bring him down at the expense of players in the English Academy Proper or talent from the Local Zimbabwean Academies?

That is why I mentioned in my introductory paragraph, the standards ZIFA is setting.

I have to make you understand that these development stages are the lowest rung of the football ladder. One has to understand that the United Kingdom system regarding academies is based on grassroots foundations from 6year olds to 13-year-olds. Then we have a development stage before the elite or scholar stage. Some clubs in the scholar stage pay their juniors and even offer scholarships. But one can graduate from 13 yr old direct to the Elite squad. There are even satellite units for training youth in many regions, including overseas run or sponsored by top clubs.

However, if the lad plays and he is outstanding, what then?

These are the issues that question our standards in football in Zimbabwe.



Isaac, who has been following the exploits of Marvelous Nakamba, Khama Billiat, Marshall Munetsi, Knowledge Musona, and Tino Kadewere, could be a coup for the Zimbabwe National team U17 or the Young Warriors. Rather this 16-year-old born on September 22nd, 2004 in England than those that bring players from low ranking clubs in the Development Squads. Isaac, who is on the books, started with Liverpool at eight years of age.

Able to play as a winger or wing-back, I watched him as a linkman, and I can say I have seen another Seth Patrick who practically dominates the midfield. That is what we need in our national team, players with guts, skill, and intelligence.

He played for England U15 on April 27th, 2019, aged 14, and later in August for the U16’s still aged 14 and 11 months and followed by games against Denmark, Japan, Russia, Ireland, and Mexico for England U16 in 2019 as a right back.

Klopp has taken a fancy at this utility player who is now in the Liverpool U18 squad.
His dad David who worked as a Pharmacist at Bulawayo Hospitals up to 2000, relocated to England. The family comes from Mutare.

I only hope that ZIFA can see beyond their blinkers and be more serious and professional to woo such players. Isaac has expressed his keenness to play for Zimbabwe. He can change as he is under the age stipulated by FIFA.



All photos and video courtesy of Miki White

Like I promised, here  are pics of the smouldering fire and ash blaken remains of the straw gazebo that caught on fire on Saturday 17 October 2020 at the Arcadia Sports Association club house.
Again, nobody was hurt or killed but many were saddened that this actually happened.
It is believed a homeless man from the community could have set this structure ablaze and could have been accidental or purposely as it is believed that the man could be suffering from a mental issue.
But the deafening silence from the Associations Trustees is bewildering. However, interested stakeholders are still in the process of donating money and services to get this iconic club going as it is and was the hub for all from the several areas throughout Zimbabwe associated with Arcadia in general.
Specifically for our grandchildren and livelihood as to part of our history, even if others disagree.



It is alleged a homeless coloured man living on the streets was illegally sleeping somewhere on the Arcadia Sports Associations premises and it is also assumed that he lit a fire which went out of control razing the straw gazebo to the ground, on Saturday 17 October 2020 in the early hours of the evening.
Nobody was injured as there were no patrons on the premises.

Arcadia club has been closed due to the effects of the covid 19 since January 2020
The Arcadia Sports Club stakeholders had come together to donate and pay a bill of RTGS/Bond 300,000 due to mismanagement accumulated in the past decade or so owed to the City of Harare for rent and rates arrears and this had to happen.
I have no idea if this straw construction was insured. But the fire brigade was on point as they doused out the inferno.


The main building being the club house and changing rooms were not affected. Already conspiracy theories are doing their rounds. That an insurance scam maybe afoot. Hogwash! Poppycock and cobblers I say as there is no value in whatever may be paid out for the burning down of the gazebo.
The theorists would be thinking along the lines of perhaps what I published in my post of ‘Arcadia issues’ that money was mis-appropriated and some people will be thinking that a witch hunt will take place. That like I said about the mismanagement will not surface because we the stakeholders are looking at progressiveness and forgetting the faults of the past.
The diasporan will only know more details as they surface and I hope to keep you informed.




Aggression, speed, and dribbling skills were the hallmark of Abdul Sumra, a former Zimbabwe National team basketball player. He passed away from coronary failure while based in Angola, on Sunday evening, 27 September 2020. Sumra was an employee for the United Nations then.

Fresh from Mozambique, a 19-year-old sporting an afro arrived in 1980 just after the Zimbabwean declaration of Independence, Abdul Sumra eventually turned out to be an asset for the good of basketball in Zimbabwe.

Mozambique has been known to be a powerhouse of basketball in the southern hemisphere and their main opponent being Angola who was in the top five in Africa, speaks volume as a young Sumra who was a former Mozambican Junior National Team player was snapped up by the former great Zimbabwean team Arcadia Bucs. Sumra played alongside big names like Norman ‘Dishy’ Roberts, Gilmour Rawson, Kieth Fisher and showed his class at Bucs.

He had been training with a newly formed team Hawks at the Morgan High School courts and was lured into joining Bucs. But a breakaway of unhappy Bucs players Ben and Rodney Darck with Sumra rejoined Hawks sponsored by the beverage company that produced a sweet drink and became Tarino Hawks. In that brief period with Tarino sponsorship, he was already a shining star. Sumra, who was a utility player, enjoyed mostly being an attacking winger/point guard. That sublime ball control on the dribble and power play saw him drafted into the Zimbabwe National Team.

Sumra was capped five times and had a fine performance in the 1985 Africa Games in Nairobi, Kenya, wherein a particular match gave the Somali Team a torrid time.

Hawks became defunct, and a new team Seventy Sixers emerged to become a powerhouse in basketball, challenging the reign of Arcadia Bucs with Sixers boasting the likes of Ben and Rodney Darck, Deryn McDonald, Tony Broderick, Victor David, and Abdul Sumra. Sixers were sponsored during their reign by 3M. Behind their success was Ramsey MacDonald, who brought in top players like the late Denzil Jarvis, Taipanei Chirenzha, Josiah Chinamano, and Kevin Cameron to become a threat Bucs.

Former players had this to say about him. Rodney Darck said, “We battled tough oppositions, and Sumra never shirked,” his brother Nigel Homan in a cracked voice said, ” Charlie, we have lost a treasure,” Anthony Broderick said, “A fine player and gentleman gone” and Ernie Noble who is still in shock said, “I cannot understand how a fit and healthy Sumra could go like this.”

Abdul Sumra, born 02 October 1962 to me, was a superb athlete whose sublime skills on the court were a joy in entertainment and off the court a wonderful human specimen. R.I.P Abdul.



I was but I am no longer a member of the ASA (Arcadia Sports Association) Why is this important that I bring it up under Arcadia Issues in the Diasporan online?

Let me take you back a little on the History of ASA and its standing with the Arcadia community before I can give you my answer.

ASA was once a thriving community sport and social entity since the early 70s. It became an amalgamation sports hub for most coloureds from all over Rhodesia. Before AUFC (Arcadia United Football Club formed 1965) had won the Castle Cup in 1968 and 1969 as well as the RNFL (Rhodesia National Football League – Division 1 – 1971-1972 the equivalent today of the Premier League) we had fallen in love and associated ourselves with a team that identified with us the coloureds in the country. The ASA was born out of AUFC. (Early 70s) The ASA became the government of Arcadia Sports that included Basketball, Ladies Hockey, Tennis, Darts, Snooker and Soccer. These clubs and players had to become members through their sports disciplines and register under the umbrella of the ASA. The picture I build here is of sport and the thousands of Arcadians in the form of families and friends from Sunningdale, Braeside, St Martins, Hatfield, Ardbennie, Harare Town and outsiders from the smaller towns rallying under the banner of Arcadia. There were even lessons in Tap Dancing and Dancing conducted by Hazel Williams, a boxing club, a library, a youth club for other disciplines besides sport and mostly were held at the Arcadia Community (Hall) Centre which is separate to the ASA. So for Arcadia as a community everything was working perfect.

But after 1984 when the country and its economy started going down, ASA membership dropped. Many that were interested persons were finding it hard to be associated with ASA and slowly this attributed to the demise of ASA and the community.

To many people were leaving the country  and hardship was very visible as standards fell. Social soccer broke down, AUFC were relegated and different people ran Arcadia Sports Association some unaware of the fact that rent had to be paid or just did not bother. Accumulation of debt to the City Council whom we rent the ASA Club property from is a worrying factor.

By the time I was overseas and wanted to pay my subs, I had no idea who to pay to. I started asking questions on whose fault was it that there was this gross mismanagement. I became so unpopular with many people. That is the Arcadia issue, people do not want to be asked questions, even accountability. I can understand the hardship but all for the better for honesty to shine through because  you will need genuine help. Many managers came and tried to revive the ASA but with the cruel economy imminent it seemed like it was to no avail. But we now have a great team on the ground who are just there to raise funds and we are paying our debts to the City of Harare and the revival is up and running. Soon we will elect office bearers, have our Arcadia become a great community again.



On behalf of the Diasporan I am delighted to present an amazing lad as this is what this publication is all about.

This li’l British born fella of Zimbabwean Parents Delsha and Clive Valentine in my arms is now an eight year old marvel. Read on.

Romario Valentine. Let this name marinate in your brain. A whizz kid?  I can well define him as that. God willing he will be an icon and he will excel in whatever he endeavours.

At this tender age here are some of his achievements already

During the lockdown in South Africa because of the Corona Virus, Romario was saddened as he thought that his feathered friends from the Umgeni Bird Sanctuary in Durban, South Africa may starve or be put down. He then decided to raise money for the birds.

Of course we all know that the sanctuary will be well provided for by the relevant Authorities in South Africa. But it was the thought behind his intention and voila R28600.00 later he raised money to assist in the upkeep for the bird Sanctuary he loves so much.

His love for birds is awesome. Here are some of his paintings. The detail in his paintings of colour contrast is amazing.

Below receiving a certificate of excellence from the Umgeni River Conservation Bird Park management in South Africa  acknowledging his effort of raising R20000 for the sanctuary. 25th July 2020

The Bird Sanctuary is now open to the public and there is a video of Romario walking through the Sanctuary as the birds are making a raucous, squawking and screeching their choruses in greeting their friend. Video is upon request directed to Charles White. Contactable via messenger.

Romario who was born at Lister Hospital in Stevenage, UK, the same hospital Formula One ace Lewis Hamilton was born (a coincidence) and the success of Stephanie Travers a proud Zimbabwean achiever who has made headlines internationally on the F1 circuit for obvious reasons, inspired Romario to paint in his own style the image of this beautiful young lady seen here with Lewis Hamilton (obscured)

Stephanie had been on the podium as the fuel technician for McLaren.

First lady of colour to be honoured and granddaughter of late great Arcadia Football Club Chairman and Administrator par excellence Pat Travers.

      Some of Romario’s work. The great Nelson Mandela. He painted this at age six.

Romario the Artist at work.

Now recognised in some Art and Culture in Durban, SA circles by some connoisseurs as a young and budding talent.

Then there is sport. Pfew. Even I feel exhausted following his schedule.

After completing the world famous and popular ‘South Africa Comrades Marathon’ …..(well 5km for the young ones) Romario Valentine poses like it was a walk in the park. Errr still eight years old.

However, his mum Delsha (Moodley) Valentine tells me he has been training so much and that he has completed 400km in between intervals so far of his 500KM target.

Zimbabweans American based ARNOLD PAYNE a former 400m Specialist, Zimbabwean American, SINCLAIR ROBERTS an ex Marathon Athlete andBritish Mo Farah (long distance world champ)take note of this rising young man.

Picture with proud Dad and mentor Clive Valentine after the Comrades Marathon.

The parents Del and Clive never force him. They say he just loves doing what he wants at his own time. They are just there to guide him. I would say they are just ‘Admin’. 😂

Tennis Ace in the making. Perhaps and God willing Romario Valentine.

Uncles Zowie, Nags, Edwin, Allen all Moodleys and Lawrence Holland who are multi talented in sport, seems to show in their nephew Romario who besides being an all rounder he also loves football.  He kicks about with friends but may take it up seriously.

Proud grandpa Dorman Moodley and a former Arcadia United defender / linkman holding grandson Romario.

 Romario poses as a future Tennis ace. Perhaps.

Do we see a Sir Gary Sobers in this young lad?

Cricketer at large. His dad says he is a medium pace bowler who can field in the slips, mid on or mid off and a steady batsman who can come in to steady the run rate or even as an opener. First Brazilian I have ever heard playing Cricket. Proud British lad also proud of his Zimbabwean and South African heritage.

(Sounds like me in my young days)

Good swing. ‘Gotta’ steady yourself….. eye on the ball……..easy now. Hit and follow through the motion. Great that there is nobody shouting ‘Mash Potato’ after the swish.

Romario shows his golfing class.

If you fond of sand dunes and salty air, quaint little villages here and there’  followed by a haunting ‘boom boom boom’ for those that are familiar with “Groove Armada” our young Romario hits the surf now and again.

One of the fastest swimmers in his age group especially in the Breast Stroke, England or Zimbabwe and even South Africa may have a top athlete here in the making.

Below a picture of Romario the Brazilian soccer star versus our beloved Romario the British lad from Zimbabwean / South African yet British parents Delsha (Moodley) and Clive Valentine.

One has won the World cup and was a ‘creme de la crème’ footballer in the world.

The other Romario Valentine has a brain of a smart intelligent boy whose passion for STEM knows no bounds. (STEM) Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics of World Recognised Institutions.

‘Ello ello ello who is a clever boy then’ 

Good parenting and loads of opportunities. We can only wish you Romario Valentine from the ‘Diasporan’ team, supporters and readers all the best son.

THE DIASPORAN FAMILY WILL ALWAYS BE THERE FOR YOU



I introduced my column with George Shaya as i saw it befitting for this thread. Now I must share someone else with our Diasporan publication. A living legend who I admire for his character and demeanour.


Edgar Rogers number 8 in his playing days with Arcadia Bucs.

(pic. courtesy of William Bezuidenhout)

Edgar walks with the grace of a gentleman and a sportsman. To me he epitomised the great Kareem Abdul Jabbar of the UCLA, Milwaukee Bucks and later LA Lakers. Edgar and Karim are more or less the same age, in their playing days they were versatile and an important cog for their respective teams.

                    Kareem Abdul Jabbar in action in his playing days for UCLA.

That Americanism in Jabbar is planted in my brain as I still see the swagger and gait in Edgar.

Edgar never talked a lot, but always challenged what he thought was wrong on decisions against his team by referees on the basketball courts with that authority and decisiveness. For good a reason to. The refereeing at some point seemed a bit biased. What with a skilful talent of Arcadians proudly dominating the sport. (Arcadia is a suburb in Harare-Zimbabwe)


Affable and a downright straight shooter, Edgar is and will always be a character worthy of respect.

Picture of Edgar Rogers today at his workplace in London. – UK

His biggest achievement in relation to Black Lives Matter goes way back in the days of his association  with Herbert Murerwa a revolutionist who became Minister of Finance in Zimbabwe.

Murerwa encouraged Edgar to form a basketball team from Arcadia after the tour of Harlem Globe Trotters (1963) that had Edgar mesmerised. Edgar loved basketball since his teens and later teamed up with Dudley Gibbs, Tony Greenland, Kimon Raftopoluos to form YMCA (Young Men Cristian Association) in 1969.

YMCA later went on to become the legendary Arcadia Bucs in 1975. The colour barrier was broken as YMCA entered the Mashonaland league recruiting young players like Wally Chipwaya from Mbare (Mbare is a suburb in the high density area of Harare.-Zimbabwe)

Edgar has been successful in the sporting fraternity, holding top posts in Basketball and Football at  National Level and was a prominent member of the Zimbabwe Olympic Committee.

His ambience as a quiet storm gave us hope and challenged us to become decent people.

I salute you Edgar Rogers.