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FAZ drops Magwende as Chipolopolo team doctor

CHIPOLOPOLO team doctor George Magwende has been dropped from his position with immediate effect.

Dr Magwende had replaced long-serving Joseph Kabungo following Andrew Kamanga’s election as FAZ president last year.

FAZ general secretary Ponga Liwewe informed Magwende of the decision to drop him from the senior national team prior to the CHAN camping currently going on in Lusaka without giving him reasons.

Dr Magwende has since been demoted to be Zambia U-23 national team doctor.

“Following the executive committee meeting of 28th October, 2017 we are pleased to inform you that the executive committee of the Football Association of Zambia has reassigned you to the position of U-23 national team from the position of senior national team doctor with immediate effect. We are confident that , given your interest, experience and dedication, you will be able to guide your team well and contribute meaningfully to its work,” read part of Liwewe’s letter dated November 29.

Dr Magwende recently became the second Zambian to acquire a diploma in sports medicine, a qualification which will soon be mandatory for all national team physicians, according to FIFA.

“Yes, it’s true that I am no longer team doctor for the Chipolopolo and no reasons have been given,” Dr Magwende said in a short interview.

He has since accepted to work at U-23 though he referred all queries for reasons of his dismissal to Liwewe, who was unavailable for comment.

But sources disclosed that the PF have always wanted Dr Magwende out of the national team since he is perceived to be opposition UPND.

Dr Magwende was among hundreds of civil servants and police officers that the PF government retired in national interest after last year’s general elections on assumptions that they were loyal to the opposition.

He was working as senior assistant commissioner in the Zambia Correctional Services (prisons) in Kabwe where he was heading Health Services prior to his retirement in national interest.

“They (PF) have been putting FAZ under pressure to remove him from the national team. But Andrew Kamanga has been resisting the manoeuvres since that amounts to interference in the running of football by politicians in government. But there was pressure, so they had to find a suitable way to remove him from there and install their own,” said a source who declined to be identified.

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