DIANA MUTAKAFIMBO, Lusaka
THE Football Association of Zambia (FAZ) has no resources to offer national team coach George Lwandamina a contract.
FAZ executive committee member Happy Munkondya said in an interview yesterday that Lwandamina will continue drilling the Chipolopolo without a contract until resources are found.
On Thursday, the Zambia Football Coaches Association appealed to FAZ to give Lwandamina a contract so that he can choose between Zesco United and the national team.
But Munkondya, who is also FAZ technical committee chairman, said current economic challenges cannot allow the association to offer Lwandamina a contract because it will be non-functional.
Government is yet to raise funds for the engagement of the national team coach.
â€œAs long as there are no resources, Lwandamina will double. The people that know the work of Lwandamina is FAZ, we know how much work he has and that is why we decided to give him this opportunity. Lwandamina is contracted by Zesco and by our employment Act, no Zambian is allowed to hold two working contracts.
â€œHow wise will FAZ be to give Lwandamina a contract when there are no resources? We canâ€™t rush into giving him a contract when we know that we donâ€™t have money to pay him.
â€œWe are mindful that he is a good coach and we are also mindful that we do not want to give him a contract that will be non-functional. A contract has to be seen to be functional, a piece of document that is non-functional is useless,â€ he said.
Munkondya said resources for the national team coach are beyond FAZ and that the association will not be excited to give the trainer a contract for window dressing.
He said Lwandaminaâ€™s situation is not new to Zambian football and cited incidences where club coaches doubled as national team coaches.
He named Brightwell Banda, Samuel â€˜Zoomâ€™ Ndhlovu, Boniface Simutowe, Moses Simwala, Godfrey Chitalu among others as some of the coaches that doubled national and club duties.
Meanwhile, management at Gorillas Lake Kivu Hotel in Rubavu has ranked the Zambia national team as the most disciplined among the teams that were accommodated at the facility during the African Nations Championship (CHAN).
Hotel manager Wafula Nicodemus in his letter to the Zambian team delegation praised the Zambia national team players and the entire delegation for their exemplary behaviour.
â€œOn behalf of the hotel management and staff, this letter serves to convey our special thanks to the football players for the discipline exhibited during their stay with the Gorillas Lake Kivu Hotel, as the hotel team has ranked the entire delegation at top position amongst the three teams that were hosted in relation to the championship,â€ Nicodemus said in a letter dated January 31.
The team returned home on Monday after losing 5-4 on penalties to Guinea in a quarter-final match.
And Munkondya, who was the delegation leader, said the players were disciplined throughout their stay in Rwanda.
â€œWe are happy that the hotel management has acknowledged the playersâ€™ behaviour.
â€œIt is not a surprise because our players were very well behaved. They were all disciplined,â€ he said.
Munkondya said the presence of veterans Christopher Katongo and Isaac Chansa enhanced the teamâ€™s morale in all aspects.
DIANA MUTAKAFIMBO, Lusaka