FIDE to hold Africa Seminar in Zambia

Fédération Internationale des Échecs  (FIDE)

FIDE is holding a seminar from July 5th-10th which will serve as administrative training for federation management. Each federation is having their flights and lodging paid for the five-day seminar. The seminar will take place at the Taj Pamodzi Hotel, a five-star establishment.

There is an extensive agenda with the guest speakers including FIDE VP candidates Ali Nihat Yacizi and organizer Lewis Ncube, current FIDE VP. The agenda appears to be filled with useful activities and includes topics like: Chess-in-Schools, Federation-Government strategies, Federation Financing and Tournament Organization.

This seminar may provide federations with an opportune moment for delegates to raise questions about the FIDE agenda for Africa. The organizers should be well-equipped to address these questions.

Note: Each federation should send his/her application along with passport scans by 30th June 2010 to,, or Full details can be read in the invitation letter here.


  1. Despite the deliberately misleading name “FIDE Africa Seminar” issued on official FIDE stationary, “FIDE”is not holding an Africa Seminar in Zambia. That would imply that the event in Lusaka is open to all African Federations, which it most certainly is not.
    FIDE Vice President, Lewis Ncube, shamelessly admitted in a recent e-mail to the President of the Angolan Chess Federation, Dr. Aguinaldo Jaime, “The African Seminar I am hosting in Lusaka is on behalf of the Kirsan Ilyumzhinov ticket and is being funded by the FIDE President as part of our ticket’s campaign.
    Attendance is by INVITATION”.
    Kirsan Ilyumzhinov and his ticket are perfectly entitled to hold whatever event they want as part of their election campaign – assuming it is done with their own money. However they are NOT, under any circumstances, allowed to call it a “FIDE” seminar and lie about its true purpose. The American legal firm, White and Case, have already highlighted several instances of irregularities, deceptions and profound bias by the Kirsan regime in matters concerning the nominations for the FIDE Presidency. This latest brazen hijacking of the name of the international governing body, (ironically whose motto is “gens una sumus” – we are one family) for a purely party political event constitutes yet another serious abuse of office by the current administration.
    The Karpov2010 campaign, by contrast, is fully open and honest about its intentions. We will host a grand Africa Conference in Luanda from September 3-5, to which many African Federations will be invited. I might add that the event will also be attended by Garry Kasparov.

  2. Waiting on updates from Zambia. Kirsan Ilyumzhinov is scheduled to attend. Here is a release from Lewis Ncube that I received through a third party.


    Sent: Wed, 30 June, 2010 21:42:32

    Dear All,

    Please be advised that the FIDE President His Excellency Kirsan Ilyumzhinov will attend the opening two days of the FIDE Africa Seminar. He will be present from July 6 to 7, 2010. He will spend sometime with each Federation President/Delegate and it would really be beneficial to ensure that we all prepare really well to maximise the returns of this opportunity to each of our Federations.

    In this regard those wishing to put some questions which may require detailed analysis before a response is provided can forward their questions to me in advance.

    However those preferring to put their questions directly to the FIDE President can prepare their submissions and take the opportunity to ask their questions directly to him in Lusaka.

    Sincere apologies regarding the delayed transmission of e-tickets.
    This will be done before the end of Thursday 01 July 2010. Visas will be issued on arrival for those requiring entry visas to Zambia. The relevant letters will also be sent before the end of Thursday 01 July 2010.

    The Zambian chess fraternity looks forward to welcoming you to our country.

    Best Regards,

    Lewis Ncube
    FIDE Vice President

  3. Gabonese chess body hails Simutowe as Africa’s pride
    By Sydney Mungala

    Wed 07 July 2010, 04:00 CAT

    GABONESE Chess Federation president Bongo Akanga has described Zambian chess sensation Amon Simutowe as Africa’s pride.

    Speaking ahead of the 2010 FIDE Africa seminar, Akanga said the event should be used as a revival of the continentís chess fortunes.

    “Simutowe is a good chess player who has made Africa proud. It is a good thing for the continent,” he said.

    Akanga expressed delight at the presence of FIDE president Kirsan Ilyumzhinov for the four-day seminar.

    “This is a very important seminar for Africa as we are going to be with the FIDE president during the deliberations,” he said.

    The four-day event will draw participation from 20 African countries affiliated with the World Chess Federation.

    Akanga said Gabon shared a mixed football history with Zambia.

    “We have an interesting history with Zambia; they beat us at the Africa Cup and their players died in our country,” he said.


  4. FIDE President in Zambia
    Wednesday, 07 July 2010 06:54

    On the 6th of July the FIDE President, Head of Republic of Kalmykia Kirsan Ilyumzhinov arrived in Lusaka, the capital of Zambia, to participate in Administrators seminar for the leaders of African Chess Federations. He addressed the guests of the seminar, participated in the presentation that was prepared and submitted by FIDE Commercial Director Mr. Geoffrey Borg, discussed with the leaders of African Chess Federations a number of the most urgent issues of chess development in the African continent.


  5. The above FIDE release implies that the seminar was for ALL leaders of African Chess Federations. Was this event by invitation or not? Was Dr. Jaime actually told he could not attend? If it was a FIDE seminar to address federations on the most urgent issues, then all would have been invited. Even if it were a campaign seminar, then it is advisable to convince those who are supporting Karpov to side with the Ilyumzhinov. This is what the democratic process calls for. Someone needs to clarify why if the event was publicized on FIDE letterhead that it was not open to all FIDE members? If it were a campaign event, then it should NOT have been in the name of FIDE.

  6. Recent reports from private sources indicate 60 countries have shown support for Kirsan. My country, Kenya, is one of them. Of course the decision by the Kenyan federation to support Kirsan must have been made behind closed doors. On the gorund nobody has ever had a clue as to who the officials wanted to support, nor were players on the ground (which include registered federation members) ever asked for their opinion.

    This is the problem. The players, the REAL people who are affected by any decisions, have no say in this thing.

  7. So true Mehul.
    I have no idea how my federation (South Africa) stands in this and I doubt if any player, who plays for the enjoyment and love of the game knows.
    It would be shameful if they (the federation) do not listen to the will of the majority of the players. A quick unscientific random survey among some players recently in SA showed that the majority were in favour of Karpov.

  8. Ditto here (though some players do prefer Kirsan, but majority are for Anatoly)…if it was upto the local players on the ground I suspect Africa would go Karpov. Unfortunately just like the way the gods have placed the middle-game before the end-game so have they placed the officials before the players.

  9. Chess South Africa have announced their support for Kirsan. No reasons as to why, and no comment. Our president attended the the Zambian junket and returned without a comment.
    As Johan did I asked a few top players here and the support for Karpov was overwhelming.
    The actual vote has not taken place yet so one hopes the real chessplayers will rise up and reverse the SA officials’ decision.
    I hope the Karpov team announce their strategy for Africa timeously.

  10. Here is a synopsis of the meeting from the site:

    Summing up the working visit of the FIDE President to Africa, we can describe it as very constructive and important for development of chess in this continent. After meeting with the Zambian Sports Minister it was decided that since new school year chess shall be introduced in Zambian schools as a facultative subject. At the meeting with 18 leaders of the Chess Federations a great number of important issues were discussed and many important decisions were taken: preparation of trainers and arbiters, participation of the teams in the 2010 Khanty-Mansiysk Olympiad. A sensational idea was expressed – for the first time in the history to organize in 2016 the first Chess Olympiad in Africa. Ilyumzhinov said: “to date we have 33 African countries as FIDE members. Our task is for the rest 20 to join FIDE in the nearest future”. (see report)

    Here is an essay I wrote on the FIDE election. I have yet to receive a complete report or minutes on the seminar. However, if it was not a public event, then the minutes may not be forthcoming. Lewis Ncube told me he would soon give final view of the seminar.

    FIDE Election hotly-contested in Africa

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