THE Association of Zambia (FAZ) must be truthful whenever dealing with finances for the players, Minister of Sports Vincent Mwale has said.
And Mwale has charged that Government does not have an obligation of paying the Under-17 players after engaging them in tournaments.
Mwale was responding to media reports which suggested that the Under-17 national team players cried foul over FAZ’s decision to send them home without paying them their allowances
He said it was Government’s policy through the Ministry of Sports to only pay for the senior national team.
Speaking during a press briefing in Lusaka yesterday, Mwale said if there would be need to amend the policy in future, Government shall look into it.
He said FAZ must make it clear to the Under-17 and 20 players before engaging them for tournaments how much they should expect to be paid by the association.
Mwale said if FAZ clearly stated how much it would pay players then they would not seem to be surprised after tournaments.
“FAZ has got its own financial challenges and this is why they should be using the ministry to reach out to the sponsors,” he said.
Mwale said FAZ had a lot of sponsors including MTN who could help them to pay their dues.
He expressed confidence that the Under-20 team would redeem the nation after the Under-17 and senior teams were booted out of the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations.
“We hope that the Under-20 can bring back the smiles on our faces,” he said.
Mwale called on corporate sponsors to come on board and help the Under-20 buy air tickets for them to fly to Senegal.
Zambia has been placed in Group B along with Ghana, Mali and South Africa.
Zambia’s opening match will be against Mali on March 9 to be followed by the match against Ghana on March 12.
The final group stage match will be played against South Africa at the Leopold Senghor Stadium on March 15.
Group winners and runners-up from each group will qualify for the semi-finals.