A MEMORANDUM of Understanding between FAZ and the Livingstone City Council is almost sealed regarding the lease of Maramba Stadium for FIFA funded rehabilitation, according to Livingstone Pirates FC president Aggrey Njekwa.
And the Council has pledged to give a plot to each of the Pirates players before the local authority is dissolved ahead of this year’s general election.
In May last year, FAZ general secretary Adrian Kashala inspected the stadium and said that the association had identified the facility and four others countrywide for rehabilitation to international standards.
Kashala said FIFA was looking at facilities that would be leased to FAZ for a period of up to 25 years.
In an interview, Njekwa said the delay over the MoU conclusion came from the Livingstone City Council as the local authority was concerned about who was going to be getting the gate takings.
“This component has since been resolved, everything has been rectified and anytime sooner the MoU will be signed,” said Njekwa.
“We have the Victoria Falls, hotels and lodges and also the international airport. And any team from anywhere can fly in and play with any club or the national team and fly out. This will help us grow the tourism sector if the city.’’
And Livingstone mayor Eugene Mapuwo has appealed to FAZ to embark on a talent identification programme by visiting lower league teams such as Pirates.
“I am appealing to FAZ to come and watch our boys play; they are so good and can be called into the national team.” said Mapuwo.
Meanwhile, Pirates players have been promised plots each as a way of motivation and appreciating them for their hard work.
During a meet the players fundraising dinner held at Victoria Hall on Saturday, Mapuwo agreed with club president Njekwa who urged council management to allocate plots to the national league players.
‘’I direct the town clerk to look after the players very well and give them a plot each before the council is dissolved,” said Mapuwo as players applauded with much delight.
He added that there was need to beef up resources for Pirates and called on all Livingstone residents to be part of sponsoring the team.
Njekwa who once played for CUSTEX Wanderers under the then Customs and Excise, now ZRA and later joined the council outfit as a number five defender, said the local authority had been sponsoring the team for the last 49 years.