?> Desmond Katongo laid down the marker | ZamFoot

Desmond Katongo laid down the marker

OPINION: Of bans, blacklist and bola part 3 is a masterpiece crafted by Edem Djokotoe: a scribe of longstanding, media trainer and an author of the “soul to soul” column in the defunct Post Newspaper.

In this article, Djokotoe writes about a clandestine in undertones that past regimes at Football House employed in collaboration with the communication department; on collision course with critics in the fourth estate; unfriendly press men denying them accreditation to access stadia and cover matches.

Allow me to take you back to part 2 of bans, blacklist and bola – where Djokotoe writes vis-à-vis the irresistible voice behind the microphone; the commentator colossus; the late Dennis Liwewe and how he was stripped of his FAZ life membership over trivial matters.

In part 3, Djokotoe goes on to mention names of the Journalists who at the time of crafting the piece were biting the bullet from the wrath of football house.

Those mentioned were: FIFA World Cup commentator Matimba Nkonje, BBC correspondent Kennedy Gondwe, Post Editor Augustine Mukoka, Reporter Sydney Mungala and ZamFoot website founder Francis Liyungu.

And in the run up to the 2016 elective annual general meeting, the FAZ mouthpiece resolved to be partisan with the incumbent; to be used as a campaign tool; a hired gun to thrash political opponent and consequently when their masters were pummeled into submission, the mouthpiece, in a heat of a moment resigned.


In a WhatsApp group, encompassing the think-tank of African football, Zimbabwe football Association (ZIFA) Communication manager Xolisani Gwesela was hailed for being professional when on the D-day of the 2018 elective congress he was seen in images, interacting with his boss opponent Felton Kamambo – who was contesting for the presidency and later on the day emerged victorious.

Former Ghana football Association (GFA) communications Chief and now CAF media officer Ibrahim Sannie Diarra equally heaped praise on Gwesela stating that he was not serving personalities, something that all media officers ought to emulate.

Akin to Gwesela, outgoing FAZ communications manager Desmond Katongo remained professional throughout his stint. Not at any point did Katongo allow himself to be used as a hired gun and fight political battles on behalf of his bosses.

Even at the time when the Zambian football sphere was palpably toxic, Katongo, a former producer of the Supersport Mpila bola show remained a professional that he is, in the face of provocation. When faced with allegations by hawks like Godfrey Chikumbi, that he deliberately refrained from using an image that had Kalusha Bwalya and 2017 African young player of the year Patson Daka at the Aiteo Awards gala in Ghana – Katongo remained a professional that he is.

In a Facebook conversation with the Author of this piece, following these accusation, Katongo said he does not engage in cheap politics – something unfortunately his predecessors never hesitated to blatantly engage in mudslinging.

Under the auspices of Desmond Katongo as the FAZ mouthpiece no Journalist, even the mushrooming bloggers can claim to have been denied accreditation. It was truly an emancipation of the fourth estate as the blacklist even disappeared into thin air.

Fast forward to few days ago, emotions see-sawed from rage to devastation, when Katongo hit his colleagues and family members with a curve ball, when he announced courtesy of his Facebook account that he had submitted his resignation letter as FAZ Communications manager.

The baritone voiced Katongo will unequivocal be leaving football house with his head held high, knowing he has laid down the marker by dignifying the FAZ communication department which in the past was mired into political stench and was professional bankrupt.

As the new FAZ communication manager Mwazipeza Chanda takes over the mantle, she surely has to take cue from her predecessor and carry on the professional torch, as a professional that she is.

As for Desmond Katongo, we as the ZamFoot crew wishes him all the very best in his future endeavors.

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