United Party for National Development of Zambia has tendered unreserved apology over the embarrassing behavior of their thugs during Saturday’s 2018 World Cup qualifying clash with Nigeria in Uyo.
The party issued a statement in this direction on Monday, which reads: “As UPND, we would like to sincerely apologise to FIFA and CAF for the unbecoming and embarrassing behaviour of the PF thugs that displayed partisan political banners inside the Nigerian stadium during yesterday’s match between Nigeria and Zambia.
“The UPND is fully aware of the FIFA rules and regulations that strictly prohibits display of political and religious banners during the matches.
“At national level, sporting events such as football have always been uniting factors for all citizens that transcends across political and religious lines.
“It is therefore unimaginable that the PF leadership can sponsor their thuggery behaviour abroad and risk the whole nation being sanctioned by FIFA for breaking straightforward rules.
“It is such conduct that sometimes makes citizens not supporting even worthwhile causes when they suspect that one grouping intends to gain political mileage out of it.
“If the PF leadership wants, they can register their own team with FIFA and CAF but must leave the Zambian National soccer team to the Zambian people where everyone will be part of it.
“On behalf of the Zambian people who love soccer, we once more want to ask for leniency from FIFA for such thuggery behaviour of the PF cadres inside the Nigerian stadium yesterday.”
Patriotic Front cadres Kennedy Kamba, musician Jordan Katembula (JK) and John Chanda Chimba are the persons behind the political banner that graced Uyo Stadium in Nigeria where the Supper Eagles faced the Chipolopolo bullets.
At stadium stand was a political banner dubbed ” H.E H.E LUNGU GOD BLESS YOU” which has attracted a sharp reaction from some Zambians.
Alex Iwobi’s 73rd minute goal decided the keenly contested tie in favour of Nigeria, who became the first African nation to book a spot at next summer’s Mundial in Russia with a game to spare.
It will be Nigeria’s sixth appearance at World Cup finals following their debut at the 1994 edition in USA.