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BITTER DIVORCE: Kamanga, Simataa end ‘friendship’ in public


FAZ President Andrew Kamanga revealed that his personal relationship with one time ally Simataa Simataa has ended.

The FAZ Chief has also said veteran journalists duo Augustine Mukoka and Kennedy Gondwe are also not in good books with him.

But the trio have hit back at the FAZ President.

Below is what Andrew Kamanga wrote.

“Augustine Mukoka, Kennedy Gondwe Gondwe and Mr Simaata havae decided to call time on our friendship. I may have failed to meet their expectations but I remain guided by the constitution.

I was not put in office to serve individuals but everyone involved in football.

Records are there to show that I nominated Mr Simaata as GS and I have no apologies for that decision. Regrettably the Exco decided on Mr Liwewe.

Gondwe, Mukoka and Simataa responds

Kennedy Gondwe said:

You may wish to know that one of the reasons for the so called fallout is that Andrew has departed from the promises on which he was elected and some of us would face him in private and on the phone countless times to remind him about that and being loyal to his people and not to serve individuals like he alleges.

You may also wish to know that we don’t rely on football to feed ourselves and pay bills, we have other activities that put food on the table. Alas, when we reminded Andrew on some of the sticking issues, he accused us of holding him to ransom, being disrespectful and lacking loyalty towards him. But according to what I know, loyalty is a two-way issue just like respect is and being told or reminded about the truth doesn’t amount to hold someone to ransom or being disloyal. And when friendship is one sided, in my view, that amounts to patronage and I personally hate patronizing people.

Most importantly, when lies, deceit, dishonesty and slander come in between friendships, that ceases to be friendship. Ultimately, the things we talk about here have been directly told to Andrew by some of us in the spirit of friendship but what we started getting was a combative and defensive approach so we let him be and started we talking to football instead and provide him with the checks and balances like we’ve done with people before him…

I have done so [calling] so many times lies have been told about me to him and by him to clarify matters.

And what makes matters worse, as you very well know, is that he has blocked me on his phone and asked me to block him—that I have obliged. But if he calls me, I’ll pick his call.

Unless he fed me, then I’d be worried about where my next meal will come from. But life has to go on and so should our football. This is not about him but the sport we love.

And most importantly, we’ll continue providing checks and balances. If he does something good, I’ll give him credit and if he doesn’t, we’ll say it as it is. That shouldn’t be mistaken for hating him, holding him to ransom or disrespecting him. If he respects me, I’ll reciprocate. If he doesn’t, he’ll get exactly that. Nothing more, nothing less. That’s who I am, unfortunately.

Augustine Mukoka then wrote…..

In responding to FAZ president Mr Andrew Kamanga, let me state that at no point did I ever apply for friendship and if calling him to do the right thing insofar as managing our game is concerned amounts to calling time on our friendship, there is very little I can do to change his perspective.

Yes, he was never elected to serve individuals and at no time have I asked him to serve me as an individual even when I know he is serving himself. Not for me to delve into that sphere for now. Our friendship, if we are to put it that way, was to advance and uphold fundamental governance principles in our game.

One of the most crucial part to Mr. Kamanga’s ascendancy was the need to show respect of the rules and regulation football has set out.

Article 3 of the FAZ constitution insulates all of us in football to freely participate in the politics of our country free of persecution. Mr. Kamanga has failed to uphold this part of the constitution on Dr. Magwende and is therefore in breach of the very constitution he claimed he will serve and protect. It’s this failure to uphold the constitution that all well meaning football followers should seek to correct.

There is a pile of complaints against the performance of the FAZ GS. He is like a brother to me & friend, but football and our country is bigger than anyone of us. His failures are not his own, but ours too. There is nothing Mr. Kamanga does not know about my views on football that I have shared publicly. All these views have been brought to his attention. Failure to make decisions is failure of leadership. The reasoning in his response could have been better.

Article 38 (3) of the FAZ constitution places responsibility squarely on the president when it comes to the office of the General Secretary. So trying shift blame to other ExCo members is not leadership. The president must carefully consult the statutes and/or ask his legal team to help him appreciate the guidance therein.

If seeking answers in relations to respecting statutes are expectations not met, I am afraid staying on the fence in the name of a friendship that is shrouded in gossip and hypocrisy has never been a part of me. I chose open rebuke or counsel.

And finally Simataa Simataa wrote:

I think it is important that people understand that I did not campaign for AK in order to be rewarded with a job… It was something AK himself offered me and which job, had it been given, I would have been happy to take up. For reasons already in the public domain, it went to somebody else. God knows I do not harbour an ounce of bitterness over issue nor have I begrudged the guy who got the job…but AK knew what he was getting when I campaigned for him…somebody committed to a cause bigger than the FAZ and greater than the position of GS … Zambian football… This is something that I have given the last 35 years of my life to, as a fan, coach, administrator, club proprietor and many other roles…In every role that I have been privileged to serve the game, I have always tried to give of my very best… Often I have been misunderstood and my motives questioned, especially when I have spoken out forcefully about football matters that I felt strongly about, which is often, but those who know me know that my involvement in footballfootball was always from sincere motives…And always, always, I have tried to stand up for football with the courage of my convictions…AK and anyone for that matter can expect no less and no more…I am no angel but I am not one who speaks with malice. I try to be loyal to my friends and fair to others. AK understands that more than many others.
Lastly I have not asked anyone to interpret my relationship with AK. So can I just ask that we please just leave this Simataa-Kamanga thing alone?

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