BARELY hours before the Football Association of Zambia (FAZ) ushers in a new executive committee, tension is running high in the Kalusha Bwalya and Andrew Kamanga camps.
The FAZ elective annual general meeting is set for today at Moba Hotel in Kitwe with tight security from the Zambian Police anticipated .
As at yesterday, supporters of the rival camps were clad in T. Shirts with inscriptions of their preferred football candidates.
FAZ president Kalusha is seeking third term but faces a fierce opposition from business executive Kamanga.
Former FAZ committee member Henschel Chitembeya is also hoping to end Kalusha’s reign.
In the past days, Kamanga and Chitembeya have questioned the eligibility of Kalusha contesting the elections when he was undergoing corruption investigations by Anti-Corruption Commission.
They two presidential challengers had written an appeal to FIFA ethics committee questioning Kalusha’s eligibility. FIFA ethics committee acknowledged receiving the appeal but could not state their next move.
However, Club licensing manager Erick Mwanza said Kamanga was turning to FIFA because he knew Kalusha would scoop today’s elections.
Kalusha has promised improved support to women football, lower division clubs and Zambia’s maiden appearance at the 2018 Russia world cup.
Kamanga and Chitembeya have promised transparency and accountability in the soccer body.
Chitembeya said FAZ had enough resources but diverted into selfish individuals pockets.
On paper, Kalusha is favourite to win the presidential position after receiving warm support from the lower division during campaigns.
Meanwhile, the vice president’s race has attracted five candidates.
FAZ committee members Pivoty Simwanza and Richard Kazala have in the media claimed to be the right candidates to work with Kalusha.
Simwanza claims he was the chosen one and had support from the grassroots.
But Kazala said the delegates should vote for upright candidate.
Other candidates contesting the FAZ vice president include incumbent Boniface Mwamelo, Lusaka Dynamos football club chairman Mofya Chisala and Kepas Katongo.
Meanwhile, incumbent FAZ treasurer Rix Mweemba will go through unopposed after the Appeals committee disqualified Nkana Football Club treasurer Alex Munasha from contesting after it was discovered that he had not served for four years at club administration as required by the FAZ constitution. The five slots for committee member attracted 27 candidates.
The committee members candidates include Andrew Banda, Violet Kasenge, Eutrasia Chambeshi, Elijah Chileshe, Stanley Chilimunda, Jeffrey Chipilingu, Mike Chirwa, Francis Hafwiti, Arthur Kamuloso, Kabaso Kapambwe and Gabriel Kaunda.
Others are Lee Kawanu, Brenda Kunda, Jordan Maliti, Alex Mambwe, Kennedy Matashi, Nellie Miyamba, Victor Mpundu, Joseph Mulenga, Happy Munkondya, Watson Mwale, Gideon Mwenya, Lenny Nkhuwa, Felix Nsama, Timothy Phiri, Edwin Sisya and Blackwell Siwale.
By press time yesterday, candidates were locked in a stakeholders meeting at Kitwe’s Moba hotel, the venue for today’s elective AGM.