GOVERNMENT has said it will not backpedal on its decision to grant Luanshya Municipal Council the rights to run Roan Golf Club as it is the only legitimate institution mandated by law to manage social amenities.
Reacting to concerns raised by some Roan golfers over the council's involvement, Sports Minister Chishimba Kambwili said councils in Zambia ran social amenities in communities on behalf of Government and, therefore, there was nothing sinister about the Luanshya case.
Kambwili said in an interview in Luanshya yesterday that by taking over the running of the Roan Golf Club, Government would still pay the demanded K2.9 million (rebased) for the purchase of the club.
He said the club was not transferred to Government for free but that there was a price to pay to the receiver of the defunct Roan Antelope Mining Corporation (RAMCOZ) who were the owners.
Kambwili said Roan would be the first golf club in Zambia to be owned by Government and that it would be budgeted for every year to ensure smooth running of the club.
He said Government was responsible for its action of directing the council to take charge of the golf club because it was in the best interest of the golfing community.
"Some people had turned the golf club into a personal money-spinner. We're yet to audit them. At the moment, the club is deteriorating and it has no sponsors. So these people should stop peddling lies. If they think Government can give it (golf club) to them (individuals), they are just wasting their time because we've given it to the council," Kambwili said.
The minister reiterated that the Dilip Bodalia-led club executive committee remained dissolved and the council would appoint a new committee soon.
He directed the Luanshya town clerk to take charge of the club and ensure the former executive does not hold any more meetings within the club premises without the consent of the council.
On the golfers' observations that nothing official had been received about the dissolution of the executive committee, Kambwili said: "When they were appointed who wrote to them? Anyhow, I have directed the Town Clerk to write to the club about the dissolved executive committee."
He, however, said some of the members of the former executive could be brought back into the new committee and emphasised that there was no acrimony but that Government just wanted to do things right.
The minister announced Government's take-over of the club which is among the 53 properties listed for sale by RAMCOZ's receiver in Luanshya.