FAZ president Andrew Kamanga says Football House has opened an inquiry through the Zambia Police and FIFA over the social media driven sex scandal involving the women national teams.
Featuring on SuperSport’s popular Soccer Africa program in South Africa, Kamanga said although FAZ had not received any official complaint from anyone over the alleged sex scandal, an inquiry had been opened encouraging anyone with information to come forward.
Kamanga said those that were not comfortable bringing evidence to FAZ could either utilize the Zambia Police route or the FIFA independent inquiry.
“What happened was that there was a lot of social media comments around the stories and obviously we had to investigate internally, and I can state here that from where we stand, we have never received any complaint other than what we have read in social media,” he said.
“But what we also did, as a responsible federation, was to open an investigation so we have now asked all those who may have evidence to bring it forward. We have also gone further because this is a very sensitive issue, we have had to write to FIFA to ask them to carry out an independent investigation. We have also, as you would expect, these are matters, which are no longer football related matters but border on crime, we had to ask the Zambia Police to go and investigate and whoever is found wanting will obviously have to face the consequences.”
Kamanga said FAZ had learnt of the many avenues within FIFA for dealing with various challenges as was the case was with the controversial gender verification regulations prescribed by CAF during the WAFCON that excluded some of Zambia’s best players.
He said that FIFA had a wing that could independently dig into the sex allegations that were being bandied within the Zambian game.
“So, it will be independent, and this is why we feel as a federation, we do not want to be the ones running the process because tomorrow we will be accused that we are taking sides. So, we prefer that an independent body such as FIFA which has the capacity to do it will be able to handle the inquiries,” he said.
“Definitely we are going to take sanctions, we have enough rules and regulations within football which we can deal with.”
Kamanga said the police had been engaged on the premise that some of the matters being alleged bordered on criminality which was a preserve of law enforcement agencies.
“As I said some of these matters border on crime and have nothing to do with football and it will now be the state police to deal with. This is why we have openly said that those who can report to us, feel free to come in, those who can go to the police feel free to do that because we want to get the bottom of this,” he said.
He also disclosed that there were enough safety nets around some women national teams with trained security personnel and managers to detect some of the transgressions being alleged.
“Just to give you a bit of comfort in terms of what normally happens when a team is in camp all teams have matrons (manager) and police officers who are women, so we expect that even when these things are happening there will obviously be a way in which they can find their way out,” he said.
“But I can assure whatever has happened will have to be interrogated to get to a point where we are very clear with where we are going.”
On the status of the search for the long-term Chipolopolo job after Croat Aljosa Asanovic jumped ship in the aftermath of Zambia’s failure to qualify to the CHAN, Kamanga said the association will trigger the process soon.
“We will obviously start the search; we have enough time before the next round of qualifiers. It was quite strange because what happened was the coach was in the middle of the CHAN tournament and one of the key performance criteria for his contract was to qualify the team to CHAN. So, the day he did not qualify he just jumped on the plane, and he has never been back,” he said.
“Whilst he was away, he sent a demand that we had not paid him and as far as our records are showing, we owe him nothing and unfortunately you will agree with me that if you have not worked, there is no basis to be paid.”