PRESIDENT’S CORNER: FAZ Council Embraces Quota System
An early Africa Freedom Day salutation from the football fraternity. Africa Freedom Day falls on May 25 (tomorrow) and it is an occasion for the continent to reflect on its long journey of emancipation. On this day, our thoughts in football are of a different nature as we reflect on the outcome of the 2021 FAZ Annual General Meeting (AGM) held in Kabwe on Saturday. Kabwe has never failed to deliver historic moments be it in football or national politics. On this occasion the FAZ Council which is the supreme organ of our game deliberated on the lingering debate of the influx of foreign players in our league.
It was gratifying to see football minds weigh in on the debate and bring finality to this debate. In line with our now undoubted good practices of transparency we circulated the motions in requisite time before tabling the matter before the council. The matter came as an agenda item submitted from Muchinga Province who proposed that Zambian Premier League teams be only allowed to have six foreign players in their ranks. After some robust debate, the members settled for five foreign players. This is a decision that was decided on by the FAZ council who are the custodians of our game. We have no doubt the collective wisdom of the FAZ council will serve our game better. The Council deferred implementation to the 2022-2023 season with players with running contracts unaffected. It is move progressive nations have used to strengthen their local talent. We hope the freed space will rouse our local players especially youthful ones to step up to the plate and get competitive action.
The AGM also ratified the formation of the Zambia Coaches Society that will formalize FAZ’s interaction with legends and other football stakeholders. Through the Zambia Coaches Society will also give a platform to life members to offer counsel. We have also set in motion a process to open a benevolent fund to be used for football related problems. It was good to see 14 members of the football fraternity who have served the game loyally previously conferred with the life membership status. Among the newest additions are deputy secretary to the cabinet Patrick Kangwa, Marcha Chilemena, John Kaunda, Ackim Musenge, Dean Mwiinde, Janet Bwalya, Wynegood Malunga, Emy Musonda, Jani Simulambo, Vincent Chileshe and Frederick Kashimoto.
The FAZ Council also took the bold step of setting up the Arbitration Tribunal that is critical in improving the dispute resolution process. The council appointed members of the Arbitration Tribunal that we hope will get maximum support from all football stakeholders.
I am confident that the decisions made by the Council will take our game to the next level. Once again Happy Uhuru!
Have a pleasant week and remember to keep safe.