Andrew Kamanga @ SS com
Andrew Kamanga @ SS com

FAZ President Andrew Kamanga's speech at the 2017 FAZ Annual General Meeting

The Honorable Minister of Sports Youth and Child Development;

National Sports Council of Zambia;

FAZ Executive Members;

FAZ Councillors;

Ladies and Gentlemen of the media;

Distinguished guests in your respective ranks and titles;

Ladies and Gentlemen,

May I, first and foremost, take this opportunity to thank the almighty God for his travelling mercies and for giving us the opportunity to converge yet again for this important annual event.

It is equally an honor for FAZ to have the Minister of Sports, Youth and Child Development in our midst as the Guest of Honor.

Honorable Minister, thank you for accepting to grace this important gathering that could lay the ground for landmark decisions for the future of our game. It is with a great sense of honor that I stand before you all as we converge once again for one of the most significant meetings of the year, 2017.

We have once again gathered to deliberate and make decisions on behalf of over 14 million Zambians and these decisions will have a great impact on the development of our football.

As I stand before you all, it will be unfair for me to begin and end this speech without acknowledging and applauding our gallant and patriotic Under-20 National Team, on their landmark achievement of being the first Zambian Under-20 team to win the Africa Cup of Nations.

This unprecedented level of success is further enlivened by their qualification for the Fifa Under-20 World Cup and also winning the 2017, COSAFA Championship.

This should set the tone for greater times ahead of us with a busy schedule on the international stage for all our national teams. I am sure we can all agree that in a space of two weeks, we saw a group of young boys become men. These young lads are a reminder to each one of us that victory cannot be attained when we are divided, but only when we remain united.

To my executive and the rest of the football community, this achievement is a clear testament that we are on course in our quest to restore football standards to its past glory years.

Members of this august house, 2017 has not only produced unquestionable success on the football pitch. Our successful hosting of the 2017, Under-20 Africa Cup of Nations is another monumental achievement worth acknowledging.

It is worth pointing out that the successful hosting of Zambia's first ever Under-20 Africa Cup of Nations comes on the back of previous attempts to host a major Confederations of African Football (CAF) tournament.

The country had put forward a bid to host the 2019 Africa Cup but was unsuccessful and this was granted to Cameroun.

However, hosting the 2017 Under-20 Africa Cup has given the country immense pleasure and pride and it is our hope that it puts us in a good position to bid for even bigger tournaments in future.

In the light of this foundation that we have laid for ourselves, we have to also take a deep introspection on where our football is coming from and decide where we intend to go.

We gather today, faced with one of the most critical decisions that our football has ever been faced with and we all have to approach this situation with a futuristic mindset.

It is a decision that we have had to put off for a long time and now ls an hour where it cannot wait any longer.

Every one of us today should reflect on what kind of future we want for our game. We have skirted around the constitution for a long time and now is decision time. It is not time to make excuses but face the problem head on.

The constitution question has been with us and all of us are well aware of how grave the matter at hand is. FIFA has made it clear that we will face isolation from international football if we do not move alongside everyone in the global game.

On our part at the Emergency Council Meeting on February 4, 2017 we listened to all the concerns raised by our members and am delighted that the legal committee led by our learned colleagues went down to work and produced a document that we should all be proud of in particular the articles relating to membership, size of the electoral college and composition of the FAZ executive.

We do not imagine that all the strides that we have made in the past one year and everything else the country has achieved in the game can be sacrificed today on the altar of expediency.

This is not the time to settle scores but rise above self and look at the bigger picture that is for the good of our game. Ultimately this is a decision upon which posterity will judge us.

Without pre-emptying anything let me just appeal to the house that we have a decision to save the Zambian game from imminent international isolation.

Finally let me salute all of you for the support that you have rendered to me personally and the executive in the execution of our duties. It has not been easy but even in the toughest moments we have had to go through the desire to take our football forward has kept us going.

We are grateful that we have in our Republican President Edgar Chagwa Lungu, an all weather supporter and patron ably supported by the Minister of Sports Honorable Moses Mawere.

Their unwavering support has made our work a lot easier and we continue to count on their support and counsel.

Honorable Minister, Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen;

We have continued enjoying goodwill from the corporate world with FNB coming on board as the official sponsor for the U-20 while our long term partners like MTN, Supersport and Zambian Breweries have remained standing by our side. All this has been possible with our remaining loyal to the principles of accountability and transparency which has been the backbone of our leadership.

My executive will continue to engage and lobby various stakeholders with a view to increasing our financial base and promoting football development at a[] levels. My executive will also continue to promote transparency, accountability and good corporate governance with a view to restoring confidence in our current and future sponsors.

Honorable Minister, Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen;

The past one year has seen us introduce the computerized ticketing system for all our national team games. This piece of technological infrastructure was equally adopted during the just ended Under-20 Africa Cup of Nations tournament.

It is worth noting that, this is the first time our country is using the computerized mechanism to sale match tickets to our football fans. I am proud to say that the process has been effective in promoting transparency, accountability and has made it easier for our soccer loving fans to purchase tickets at their own free time.

Furthermore, as part of our on-going efforts to promote transparency, accountability and good corporate governance, FAZ has been announcing all match gate-takings, a feat that has never been done before.

These actions are not a mere coincidence but a reflection of what we stood and still stand for. Remember that we were ushered into office on the premise that we were going to promote transparency, accountability and good corporate governance.

Today, I can proudly say, my executive is walking the talk.

Honorable Minister, Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen;

The past one year has not sailed through without its fair share of challenges. The preceding one year has been a very important learning curve for each one of us.]t has not withered in front of our eyes without any major setbacks.

The failure by our Senior National Soccer Team to qualify to the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations and the disqualification of the Under-17 National Team from the COSAFA Championship are two hurdles we have had to bitterly swallow.

We have recruited a new Senior National Soccer Team Coach whom we believe has the ability to transform our team and deliver the much needed positive results.

Members of this august house, let me take this opportunity to thank each one of you for the remarkable support you have continued to render to my executive and the entire association.

The success we have recorded in the past one year is a true reflection of what we can achieve IF we remained united, steadfast and true to our values, mission and goals.

The failures are a crucial reminder to my executive on the need to remain focused and not to be complacent. I would like to take this opportunity to remind everyone that our journey has just began.

As we deliberate today’s issues, let us remind one another that we are not here to make life unbearable or bearable for one individual. We are he to deliberate over matters that will affect Zambians who are the most important stakeholder of the Zambian game

Thank you and God bless you all

National Team

There are currently no fixtures available.
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Date: 27/05/2017 Time: 10:00 Fifa U20 World Cup Costa Rica 1 0 Zambia Cheonan Sports Complex
Date: 24/05/2017 Time: 10:00 Fifa U20 World Cup Zambia 4 2 Iran Jeju Stadium
Date: 21/05/2017 Time: 07:00 Fifa U20 World Cup Zambia 2 1 Portugal Jeju Stadium
Date: 12/11/2016 Time: 17:00 World Cup qualifying - Africa Cameroon 1 1 Zambia
Date: 09/10/2016 Time: 14:30 World Cup qualifying - Africa Zambia 1 2 Nigeria Levy Mwanawasa Stadium
Date: 04/09/2016 Time: 16:30 Afcon 2017 Qualifiers Zambia 1 1 Kenya
Date: 24/06/2016 Time: 18:00 2016 Cosafa Cup Zambia 0 1 Namibia Sam Nujoma Stadium
Date: 21/06/2016 Time: 18:00 2016 Cosafa Cup Lesotho 2 3 Zambia Sam Nujoma Stadium
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