Zesco United coach George Lwandamina says he is not a tribalist and people should not hijack or politicise football banter.

Lwandamina on June 29 said in a post-match interview at Woodlands Stadium in Lusaka after beating Southern Province -based side Green Eagles that the FAZ Super Division title belonged to the Copperbelt.

Zesco beat Eagles 3-1 on post-match penalties following a 0-0 fulltime draw to win their eighth FAZ Super Division title and retain it for a third successive season.

Had Eagles beaten Zesco last Saturday, they would have made history as the first side from outside Zambia’s football hotbed of the Copperbelt and Midlands to lift the FAZ Super Division crown.

Lwandamina told LT Sports on Wednesday that his statement, that has caused an uproar, that the league title belong on the Copperbelt, was digested out of the context, and was merely a football culture wisecrack.

“I just want to clear the air about what is going on, what is happening, and the outcries from Southern Province. I thought this was football, and I am sure Choma Eagles are based in Choma, which is in Southern Province,” Lwandamina said.

Lwandamina said Eagles is a Zambian club and no one should labelled it with any tribal inclinations.

“But if you look at the (Green Eagles) team composition, they are not all Tonga’s, they maybe a few Tonga but the rest are from other Provinces,” Lwandamina said.

“For me to have said that we didn’t want the Cup to go to Southern Province and that the Cup should remain along the Line of Rail, don’t forget that Choma is also along the Line of Rail, we just wanted to protect the integrity of the Copperbelt.

“You just can’t relinquish or give up the fight for the title for the sake of, “playing the Tonga’s”, like they are saying.

“For me, I am not into politics where I have to start mentioning tribes.

“I have been in football long and I have worked with a lot of Tonga’s compared to even my own tribes mates the Kaonde’s.

“So today, I have become tribalistic, that is unheard of.

“The list is long if I start giving you the list of Tonga players who have worked under me; starting from Kennedy Mweene, Clive Hachilensa, Laughter Chilembi, Hichani Himonde, Lewis Macha and even (Spencer) Sautu who is even with Green Eagles.

“I am sure they are there to give testimony if at any point they heard me talk about tribes.

“I don’t talk about tribes, no. I impress the Zambian people; I work with all Zambian people.
“The most unfortunate part is the competition was between Southern Province and Copperbelt Province.

“And if they had won, they were going to say we have actually made history, we are the first team to have taken the Cup to Southern Province.

“So was that going to be an issue? That’s the question, and the answer is no.

“So let’s not trivialize this football. Football should remain football and independent of politics.”

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30 COMMENTS

    • When we tell you Zambia has been divided along tribal lines by ECL and group where people are retired from some regions on national interest you think it’s a joke? You can’t have the cake and eat it. Now we have to worry about what, how and where we say what to who.

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    • Surely this is a non starter.

      It is sad some people can only see tribalism or racism in life.

      I am Bemba and I have countless friends that are Tonga. I have relatives that are married to Tonga people. We do not have tribalism on the ground.

      Even in Lusaka, no one cares what tribe you are. If you are a decent person, you will be respected.

      The PF are the ones that are tribalist. But PF does not represent Zambia. Far from it.

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    • Sadly, some comments sound as if certain Zambians need passports to go to Southern province. Southern province can be home and has been home to many Zambians. That’s the way it is and that’s the way it shall remain.

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    • ChiLwandamina uku landalanda! Your ex coach Makwaza has died and we havent heard a single word of condolence from you but ukubosa bosafye over this game with Eagles. Have some priorities to talk about

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    • But what mistake has he committed? That was purely a football comment. Let’s not politicise football, if anything it’s the only thing that is uniting us

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  1. Coach forget about these people, they want to bring politics in football. I don’t understand why our colleagues in Southern Province are always uncomfortable when someone just mentions this province. Some of us are married to the same Tonga women but we are Bembas, Did we look at the Tribe, the answer is NO, so what is the issue here just because Lwandamina has mentioned SP? Nanga Province yamene iyi niya Nyoko, to hell.

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    • It was no nsesical to say it belongs to Copperbelt.
      That undermines other clubs outside copperbelt. He must apologise to FAZ and Choma eagles.

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    • @kanjimano it wasn’t nonsensical its just a brag. Bragging is part of football. It shouldn’t be taken seriously. If you’re a Zambian soccer fan you will know that there’s a rivalry between cb teams and Midlands teams and they don’t take this bragging outside of the pitch. After Mufulira Wanderers tagged themselves Mighty Kabwe Warriors called themselves Magnificent. It’s all part of the teasing you latecomers

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  2. People need to take a chill pill. We should have fun and throw banter at ourselves as Zambians sometimes, not all the time talking about tribes and politics. Lwandamina is a patriotic Zambia and should be allowed being a Zambian without fearing to even joke. It is annoying. I don’t care where you come from, you are my brother and sister. Some of us our families are so mixed that there is no point talking about tribe anymore…and I love all our cultures without exception. We must also learn to differ on the basis of ideas and opinions, not tribes. Usually individuals who rush to accuse another person of being a tribalist, have lost the argument and have nothing else to say. I don’t think I would be as wise as I am if I hadn’t learn from all corners of Zambia.

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  3. In UPND circles as long as you speak Bemba then you’re a Bemba. They don’t understand that Bemba is the language of choice on the Copperbelt, especially for miners after the now extinct chikabanga or lapalapa. Bemba has gone with miners to Solwezi and Kalumbila but some people have began a campaign of resentment against those that speak the language. Chicken George is Kaonde but played very well in the Bemba dominated Mufulira Wanderers. UPND is a disaster that sees everything tribal in everything. Copperblet teams have won the league more than any other region and it continues to be the bedrock of football. Most sportsmen and women have hailed from this region. PLEASE STOP IT!

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    • Ayatollah: This problem is too big for George Lwandamina, that is, the problem of identity in post-colonial states such as Zambia. Lwandamina shouldn’t even be worried because he’s no tribalist. Tribe and language are forms of identity. However, in post-colonial states, the new and artificial form of identity called Zambian has no single language by which to identify it. Instead it has multiple languages and this is where the problem lies. There isn’t enough space for me to xplain but there’s a growing body of social science research on this subject and it’s very interesting. Whn I read the literature I observe wht is on the ground in Zambia and I find it to be applying though the research took place elsewhere.

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    • LEAGUE WINNERS IN ZAMBIA SINCE 1962.
      1962: Roan United (Luanshya)
      1963: Mufulira Wanderers (Mufulira)
      1964: City of Lusaka (Lusaka)
      1965: Mufulira Wanderers (Mufulira)
      1966: Mufulira Wanderers (Mufulira)
      1967: Mufulira Wanderers (Mufulira)
      1968: Kabwe Warriors (Kabwe)
      1969: Mufulira Wanderers (Mufulira)
      1970: Kabwe Warriors (Kabwe)
      1971: Kabwe Warriors (Kabwe)
      1972: Kabwe Warriors (Kabwe)
      1973: Zambia Army (Lusaka)
      1974: Zambia Army (Lusaka)
      1975: Green Buffaloes (Lusaka)
      1976: Mufulira Wanderers (Mufulira)
      1977: Green Buffaloes (Lusaka)
      1978: Mufulira Wanderers (Mufulira)
      1979: Green Buffaloes (Lusaka)
      1980: Nchanga Rangers (Chingola)
      1981: Green Buffaloes (Lusaka)
      1982: Nkana (Kitwe)
      1983: Nkana (Kitwe)
      1984: Power Dynamos (Kitwe)
      1985: Nkana (Kitwe)
      1986: Nkana…

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    • LEAGUE WINNERS IN ZAMBIA
      1986: Nkana (Kitwe)
      1987: Kabwe Warriors (Kabwe)
      1988: Nkana (Kitwe)
      1989: Nkana (Kitwe)
      1990: Nkana (Kitwe)
      1991: Power Dynamos (Kitwe)
      1992: Nkana (Kitwe)
      1993: Nkana (Kitwe)
      1994: Power Dynamos (Kitwe)
      1995: Mufulira Wanderers (Mufulira)
      1996: Mufulira Wanderers (Mufulira)
      1997: Power Dynamos (Kitwe)
      1998: Nchanga Rangers (Chingola)
      1999: Nkana (Kitwe)
      2000: Power Dynamos (Kitwe)
      2001: Nkana (Kitwe)
      2002: Zanaco (Lusaka)
      2003: Zanaco (Lusaka)
      2004: Red Arrows (Lusaka)
      2005: Zanaco (Lusaka)
      2006: Zanaco (Lusaka)
      2007: ZESCO United (Ndola)
      2008: ZESCO United (Ndola)
      2009: Zanaco (Lusaka)
      2010: ZESCO United (Ndola)
      2011: Power Dynamos (Kitwe)
      2012: Zanaco (Lusaka)
      2013: Nkana (Kitwe)
      2014: ZESCO United (Ndola)
      2015: ZESCO United…

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    • LEAGUE WINNERS IN ZAMBIA
      2014: ZESCO United (Ndola)
      2015: ZESCO United (Ndola)
      2016: Zanaco (Lusaka)
      2017: ZESCO United (Ndola)
      2018: ZESCO United (Ndola)
      2019: ZESCO United (Ndola)

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  4. Comment:the issue here is about football why are people bringing and mentioning UPND. What is the connection?

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  5. It’s not southern province complaining about your unclothed statement but all mindful zambians,unfortunately nothing of clarification to clear your earlier comments u have made it worse,as an easterner I give kudos to the team from choma for a spirited season they had.

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  6. The most wise advice given on tribalism came from HH, Chipimo and Muhabi Lungu. The best way to deal with tribalism is to ignore tribal talk, whether positive or negative, just dont talk about it and it will die a natural death. kagame also

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    • Peter Njobvu: How can it die when the govt has a policy of marginalizing some languages and promoting others at taxpayers’ expense? Why should one pay tax to subsidize the language of people who look down upon one’s language? Why should some languages be imposed on provinces where they’re not even native? This smacks of colonialism of sorts. I want honest answers from you.

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  7. Me and my friends are a mixture of bembas, luvales, tongas, ushis, nsengas, mambwes etc. At our drinking table in the club, we joke about each others trib.al cultural characteristics and habits and everyone around us has a damn good laugh all the time!
    Leave Lwandamina alone you trib.als!! And who told these trib.als that Copperbelt is Chitimukulu kingdom? It’s a rich mixture of all trib.es who proudly use the bemba language for socialisation.
    And today a Kaonde trib.al cousin is a trib.alist to Tongas? Really laughable…. would say Jay Jay… kikikikikiki

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    • Upnd cadre: You sound rather uninformed and therefore too jaundiced to discuss this matter because you bring politics into it. I’m approaching it from the angle of how to build harmony in a society with many identities such as those we live in in modern times. In small unsophisticated communities such as hunter gatherers where everyone knows everyone else, there’s no problem. There are other activities in life besides politics.

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    • Upnd cadre: You don’t know that the culture and identity of the community whose language is marginalised eventually dies out. After some time fewer and fewer songs will be sung in that language and from a social science viewpoint, that’s a loss. It’s why UNESCO is spending money to prevent loss of languages around the world and encouraging diversity. I may be more informed than you on this matter because l look at this issue beyond politics. Now go ahead and insult me.

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  8. Imwe our people, upnd is a trib.al party not by its membership but by its objectives. Remember 2016 (s)election of Trib.al Hacks? Have you ever heard any of them from head to denounce that objective? Not to my knowledge, correct me if I am really laughable, Jay Jay?

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  9. Imwe our people, upnd is a trib.al party not by its membership but by its objectives. Remember 2016 (s)election of Trib.al Hacks? Have you ever heard any of them from head (Trib.al Hacks) to tail denounce that objective? Not to my knowledge, correct me if I am really laughable, Jay Jay? Kikikikikikikiki

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  10. Can someone remind us of the comment Coach Lwandamina made? Let’s go back to the comment Lwandamina made then you can understand why people are taking sides. What was the comment? Why did the Coach make that comment? What was the context in which the comment was made? These are the questions that should be answered tounderstand the arguments on both sides.

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  11. I think it was very unwise to make such a statement at a time as this. People are still nursing”tribal” wounds caused by I don’t know who but they are actually there. Even in the above article, what is being said doesn’t really make sense. Honestly, how can you not relate Southern Province to the Tongas? It’s like saying e.g. “KCM workers aren’t ready for different management” and then you come and say “People should not make KCM about miners”. Doesn’t make much sense to a wounded buffalo. The best thing would have just been to apologise for making such a statement at a time such as he did because he didn’t realise it would be taken out of context..
    P.S if it were a statement were reversed, the reaction from the public would have been worse. These are the little things that…

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  12. George lwandamina ws wrong n is wrong n will remain wrong,as long us he continues defending him self de best this man can do is to say sorry period Y utter such words at de first place n if u listen to his explanation u can tell dat de man is telling lair’s wat football culture is he talking abt zambians please in de name of JEHOVAH GOD Through JESUS CHRIST let’s end this nonsense for once o our children o n our grand children will be in big problem’s wth this tribe tag u r labeling our brothers n sisters from this province de other week it was de DC of PF suggesting we divide de province coz Tongas r tribe it hurts me to hear pipo talk wat I call rubbish ova tribe am from Eastern n hv bn to Southern on many occasions hv not come across wat many pipo talk of Tongas bn tribe,one foolish…

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  13. Sometime back soccer was played between the Copperbelt against Midlands, and there was no tribalism involved, we supported the teams depending on which region you are staying in. Nigeria enroute to Malawi played the Midlands Select and all the Copperbelt supported Midlands and they did not disappoint. Lwandamina comment cannot be excused if your mind is full of politics. But if you are a Soccer fan, you will understand where he is coming from and there is no issue. The title belongs to the Copperbelt and the Midlands. The other provinces need to have teams to compete with Nkana, ZESCO, Kabwe Warriors and ZANACO. Green Eagles DID VERY well but it was not good enough to win the title. Until such a time, Lwandamina statement is accurate in footballing terms. Keep politics to the front page,…

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  14. King George , don’t worry some people just hate you for no apparent reason. There are the same characters who were doubting if Zesco United Football Club could win the Super League Title under your care. Focus on the targets that you have set for team Yaziko and congratulations for winning the League championship !!!

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