GOVERNMENT to make decision over TP Mazembe players’s passports

Zambian international defender Stoppila Sunzu

GOVERNMENT will decide tomorrow whether or not to hand back passports to three Zambia soccer internationals who allegedly travelled to the Democratic Republic of Congo without undergoing immigration formalities.
The TP Mazembe players – Stopilla Sunzu, Rainford Kalaba and Nathan Sinkala – had their travel documents confiscated on Friday as Immigration officers continued to investigate the alleged breach of the law.
Lawyer representing the trio – Derrick Mulenga of Derrick Mulenga and Company – said after a six-hour wait: “Our friends here (Ndola) have finished the procedure and they have forwarded their findings to Lusaka.
“So the Lusaka office will make a decision and they will communicate to us by Wednesday. At the moment, the status quo is the same that they are holding on to the passports of my clients until then.
“What was happening is that they continued to record warn-and-caution statements by asking questions.”
On Friday, the players attempted to return to Lubumbashi, Democratic Republic of Congo, through the Kasumbalesa border post but were denied exit before they were driven to Ndola for questioning at the Copperbelt regional Immigration office.
Late on Friday evening, the three were asked to surrender their respective travel documents and requested to come back yesterday to collect the passports.
The three, in the company of their lawyer, reported at the Immigration offices at around 09:40 hours where interviews continued, one player after the other, and only concluded at 13:00 hours when they broke off for lunch.
They were requested to return an hour later and when they did, it took a further one and half hours before Mulenga briefed the media that a decision would be made after 48 hours.
The players are under investigations for the alleged breach of immigration regulations.
This was after the players were declared unfit by TP Mazembe to feature for Zambia in last Tuesday’s international friendly against Brazil in China.