HOW VICTOR GANDZE REMOVED MADZE BULUNGA AS SIHLANGU COACH

BY : ZWELI MARTIN DLAMINI


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MBABANE:Victor Gamedze, the late Chairman of the Premier League of Swaziland (PLS) allegedly removed the then National soccer team coach Harris Madze Bulunga after a fallout that was never reported by the Swazi media.

Bulunga, in a recorded interview that was conducted while the businessman was still alive last year could neither deny or confirm the allegations instead he said he was too scared to talk about the matter in public as he might be victimised. The coach was called to give clarity about allegations suggesting that his removal was influenced by the late powerful and political connected businessman.

Gamedze who was also the Vice President of the National Football Association of Swaziland allegedly influenced the removal of Bulunga after a misunderstanding regarding the selection of Mbabane Swallows players who were to be part of the National team. Sources alerted this publication that Gamedze had a strategy to have more Mbabane Swallows players featured in the National team so they could gain international experience for the benefit of the team.

“I can’t confirm or deny anything about the matter you are asking me about but what I can tell you is that it’s hard for me to talk about it in public, I don’t want to be victimised. You see I am a football person and for the coming years I still want to be in football so I don’t want to challenge that person. However, I am not stopping you from conducting your own investigation in the matter and maybe when the right time comes we can talk about it” he said.

It is alleged that the late powerful and politically connected businessman influenced the removal of the coach after a fallout despite that the national team was performing well under his leadership. The removal shocked many Swazis after the Football Association (FA) contracted Pieter De Jongh last year. The businessman who was allegedly taking many decisions behind the scenes for the country refused to reinstate the coach despite the intervention of Parliament.

Last year, South African Kick-Off publication described the Dutch coach as mentor who a brief spell with National First Division FC Cape Town. The Swaziland National team poorly performed shortly after he took over from Bulunga. However, the coach who was subsequently removed, was first defended by the businessman and the FA as Parliament called for his removal.

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