Zvishavane — FC Platinum coach Tenant Chilumba has finally been cleared to work in Zimbabwe after he received his work permit yesterday afternoon. "I can confirm to you that Chilumba's work permit has finally been processed and he is now eligible to work in Zimbabwe," said Chido Chizondo, the FC Platinum spokesperson.
The Zambian coach penned a deal with the platinum miners at the beginning of the year but was not able to work with the team as he had no work permit and Tendai Chikuni was in charge of the team.
"I have not heard anything as yet but if I have been issued with a work permit it is good news. I will always support Zimbabwean football and it is my desire to see football (in this country) reaching a higher stnadards.
"I have a very good record in the PSL while Hwange Football Club can appreciate my efforts. I can now start planning to work with FC Platinum," said an ecstatic Chilumba, who was at Hwange last season.
Before coming to Zimbabwe to coach Hwange, Chilumba was the Zambian Under-20 coach and was also part of the Zambian African Cup of Nations-winning team last year. In Zambia, he has won the BP Cup with Kabwe Warriors and also saw the promotion of Prison Leopards to the Zambian elite league in 2006.
Another Zambian defender Aaron Katebe is still to get a work permit to play for FC Platinum who are currently training in Kariba where they have been camped for the past two weeks.
The platinum miners will leave the country by road on Friday for Lusaka, Zambia, where they will be involved in two international friendlies against Zambian champions Zanaco and Power Dynamos.
FC Platinum off-loaded 13 players at the beginning of this month and signed only four players and promoting the rest from their Under-19 squad which is playing in the Central Region.
The platinum miners parted ways with Zephaniah Ngodzo, Muranganwa Nengomasha, Francis Kanda, goalkeeper Tsungai Mudzamiri, Benjamin Marere, Norman Maroto, Simon Njeleza, Rowan Nenzou, William Manondo, Tafadzwa Dube, Hardlife Muvundi, Louis Matawu, Thandazani Ndlovu and Norman Togara.
Peter "Captain Oxo" Nkomo, who was the goalkeepers coach, was also left in the cold and so was former Chicken Inn assistant coach Philani Mabhena.
Chilumba has already drafted in Anderson Phiri as one of his assistant coaches.
Chikuni is his other liutenant.
FC Platinum lost seasoned coach Benjamin Moyo, who died in a swimming pool in Shurugwi, on the eve of their first derby match against rivals Shabanie Mine in their maiden year in the Premiership in 2011.
They later appointed Mabhena to take charge of the team only for him to be relieved of his duties during the first half of 2011 season and his post was filled by Rahman Gumbo, who was coaching in Botswana.
Gumbo again failed to steer the team to the championship title as they settled for second place behind with Dynamos in 2011. He was later fired with Chikuni taking charge of the remaining games of the season last year. But last season saw FC Platinum managing to lift the Bob 88 Super Cup and Independence trophy. They finished seventh in the league.
Meanwhile, Chilumba is regarded as one of the best coaches in his country and also in Zimbabwe where he managed a top four finish with Hwange in 2011. It was during that same year when he scooped the Coach of the Year award. He, however, did not do much at Hwange as he did not have enough resources but expectations are high in Zvishavane as they have vowed to win the league championship for the first time this year.