The President of the Football Association of Zambia;
FAZ Executive Committee Members present;
Senior Government Officials present;
Football Clubs Representatives and Councillors present;
Members of the Press;
Distinguished Invited Guests;
Ladies and Gentlemen,
I am greatly honoured to grace this year’s Football Association of Zambia annual general meeting which is basically being held here in Lusaka at the New Government Complex. For those who are not aware, this is where the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Child Development is also domiciled.
I am very hopeful that the annual general meeting which you will be deliberating shortly will be very fruitful.
Ladies and gentlemen, it is important to note that this annual general meeting is coming against the backdrop of the recently held U-20 Cosafa tournament which was held in South Africa and the 2017 Total U-20 Africa Cup of Nations which we hosted successfully hosted. As we all know, both tournaments were won by our Junior Chipolopolo boys who have made the entire country proud.
Once again, I would like to congratulate the FAZ Executive Committee, the technical bench and the team for winning the prestigious trophies. The performance of the Junior Chipolopolo shows how dedicated and focused the FAZ Executive Committee is in the developing Zambian football at all levels. Without your selfless efforts our team would not have won the two very important trophies. It is therefore undoubtable fact that team work, unity of purpose and hard work are critical factors to success.
Government, through my Ministry shall continue to support your efforts to ensure that the sport is scaled up to greater heights. Ladies and gentlemen, in the midst of all theses achievements scored in the last few months, there has been a process of reviewing and amending the FAZ Constitution to bring it in tandem with the emerging issues globally and principles of good governance in football. Ultimately, the amendments will make the administration of football in our country more efficient and effective.
Ladies and gentlemen, your leadership once more is being put to test this afternoon because eyes of all of Zambians will be looking to see how you are going to conclude this constitutional matter which has been outstanding since 2011. It is our hope as Zambians that once concluded this will promote good governance and transparency in the management of football in this country which is in line with the 2012 National Sports Policy.
Ladies and gentlemen, I therefore encourage all of you the councilors who are here present to deliberate on all issues which will come before you in the most prudent manner. You all know how we Zambians love football. Let the proceeding of this meeting be done in the interest of football, our footballers who play at all levels and the nation at large.
It is important, ladies and gentlemen, that we put our differences aside and ensure that the collective interests are always above our personal interests. We must remember that millions of Zambians, young and old, and from all walks of life enjoy this sport of football.
Therefore, any decision you will make should take the administration, coordination and management of our beloved football to greater heights.
What should be included in the constitution should be able to guide and actualize the running of football in the country in all our ten provinces.
Mr President, I would like to emphasize that the Ministry of Youth, Sport and Child Development would like to see that talent identification is done in all ten provinces so that each province is represented, each province is participating in the sport of football.
Always bear in mind that football is our unifying factor; it brings us together as a nation and it really makes us feel that we are indeed one Zambia, one nation.
This is especially true when our national teams are performing to the expectations of all Zambians.
Ladies and gentlemen, on behalf of the Government of the Republic of Zambia, under the able leadership of His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu who is also the FAZ Patron, I would like to commend the football Association of Zambia Executive Committee led by its president Mr Andrew Kamanga for abiding by the FAZ Constitution in holding this annual general meeting.
I want to urge and encourage other sports associations to emulate what FAZ has done today.
Ladies and gentlemen, as I conclude, allow me to commend once again the FAZ Executive Committee for inviting me to grace this very important occasion for the football fraternity. I am confident that the meeting will come up with an amended constitution that is in line with the FIFA requirements and expectations of all Zambians.
I am hopeful that you will emerge more united than ever before for the sake of football development and our motherland Zambia.
I thank you ladies and gentlemen and I wish all of you the best deliberations this afternoon.