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THE Football Association of Zambia (FAZ) is owing referees in the lower divisions over K100, 000 in officiating allowances.

According to some referees, FAZ has not paid them their officiating allowances for the 2020/2021 and the 2021/2022 soccer season.

However FAZ Referees manager Aziph Banda said the association remains committed to paying the referees their allowances.

Banda said FAZ was looking into finding sponsorship for lower leagues so that part of the monies that can be channeled into lower leagues from sponsors can be used for the welfare of referees.

“For the lower leagues the allowances are broken down into two, officiating allowances and travelling allowances, so travelling allowances the teams pay but the officiating allowances is what FAZ pays and FAZ came up with that initiative to help the clubs.

“The fact of the matter is that after they officiate, at the end of the season referees are supposed to be paid their officiating allowances. It is not that when they officiate they are paid there and then, they compile the games they officiated for the season,” Banda said.

“We are almost done paying referees for the last season some haven’t been paid that is what I’m saying on the payments and very soon they will be paid.”

And FAZ presidential aspirant Godfrey Chikumbi has accused FAZ of neglecting the needs of referees who are key stakeholders in the growth of the Zambian game.

Chikumbi said it is unfair that referees in the lower league can go for two seasons without receiving their allowances.

He said failure to pay referees in the lower league is promoting corruption and match fixing in lower leagues because referees are vulnerable to receiving bribes to fix games.

Chikumbi challenged FAZ to pay the referees and harmonise the conditions of service for both lower and super league referees.

He alleged that the K80 to K150 for referees in the lower divisions is not enough hence the need for FAZ to revise the allowances.

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