Heritier Lumumba releases secret tape recordings of former Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley

Heritier Lumumba went public with recordings of conversations with Nathan Buckley on Tuesday — then warned Collingwood he has many more. Listen to the audio here.

Heritier Lumumba has released a series of previously secret tape recordings
Heritier Lumumba has released a series of previously secret tape recordings

Heritier Lumumba has released a series of previously secret tape recordings from meetings with former Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley during his tumultuous final year at the Magpies.

The audio, tweeted by Lumumba on Tuesday, appears to verify his claim that Buckley accused him of throwing Eddie McGuire “under a bus” when he publicly questioned the then Collingwood president’s infamous King Kong gaffe.

Buckley said on Monday that Lumumba’s version of events surrounding his experiences at Collingwood was “not the truth that I know to be true”.

Lumumba’s posts include a recording of a 2014 meeting, in which Buckley says to Lumumba of McGuire: “You threw him under the bus. You threw him under the bus, mate”.

Lumumba replies:“ I didn’t throw him under the bus. And we can’t go through that again. I’ve gone through this whole year, and this is part of my issue, because you still believe that, and that’s what hurts me so much, Bucks. And I know you’ve carried it this whole time.”

Buckley says: “What the whole thing comes back to is, do you actually think about the best interests of the football club?”

Lumumba says: “Absolutely, can I explain why?”

Buckley replies: “Why would you go back to the one that you had just had with Eddie (the King Kong incident) … I don’t think you need to address that.”

Lumumba says: “Well, we obviously do because that’s what you’ve – and I have felt this … for the last 12 months, that you think that that is what I did. And you questioned my intentions for doing that. That is so hard and that’s why I have carried so much, because I have suffered because of that. I was instructed from what happened with Eddie, I was told that ‘yeah, you can make a comment’. I was told that and when I did I was then ostracised for that.”

Buckley says: “Did Riles (Collingwood media manager Stephen Reilly) think you were going to somehow support the club? … because you’ve become a bit of a rogue and you might call it leadership but you’ve basically gone on your own, not tangents, but on your own crusades at times.”

McGuire last year told Footy Classified he wasn’t aware of Buckley’s alleged “under the bus” remark, while Buckley refused to discuss the specifics of Lumumba’s claims detailed in a truth-telling dossier obtained by News Corp this week.

“There are no buses here,” McGuire said. “I don’t know if he (Buckley) did (say that) … I’m reading that.”

Nathan Buckley and Heritier Lumumba
Nathan Buckley and Heritier Lumumba

ADDITIONAL RECORDINGS

In a second recording released by Lumumba, he says to Buckley: “Whether it’s been intentionally or unintentionally, I’ve been unfairly treated in this workplace. I have been.

“One thing that I’ve found really hard is how I’ve been controlled in this environment. Like, my opinion has been suppressed. You asked me, you even said yourself Nathan, you said ‘be more demanding – even of our own coaches’ – you gave me the green light and so what do I do? I take that green light and then I get hit down for it in every way … I even came to you and said, ‘Mate, I would sign a contract here taking a significant …”

Buckley replies: “Yeah, I understand that.”

Lumumba: “Let me explain, I said to you.”

Buckley: “I know what you said.”

Lumumba: “No, I’ll explain it again so you can remember …

Buckley: “No I can remember, mate. Guess what, mate? I don’t want to hear it. I don’t need to hear what you’re gonna say, mate.”

Lumumba: “And unfortunately that’s how I feel within this whole organisation.”

Buckley: “I know you do. And you know what I’ve worked out is that no matter how much time and energy that people spend with you, they might not get, they might not live up to your standards, they might not get to what you want them to be or what you want it to be, and sometimes it’s better just to say, ‘Okay, well, if we’re not going to get there, let’s go and spend some time with people who are actually going to make some progress and that want to be involved in this place’.”

Heritier Lumumba during Collingwood training
Heritier Lumumba during Collingwood training

BUCKLEY RESPONDS

On Tuesday Lumumba tweeted: “I’ve given Nathan Buckley many years to grow and hopefully tell the truth. Unfortunately, he has used his platform and considerable profile to discredit me, including making insinuations about my mental health and being deliberately misleading about the past.

“My claims about Buckley have always been consistent: That he was actively aware of serious cultural problems at Collingwood, and that he was instrumental in punishing me and pushing me out of the Club when I spoke up about these issues at all levels of CFC.”

“The highest profile instance of Buckley undermining me was a 2017 press conference where he denied any knowledge of the racist nickname ‘chimp’ which I was subjected to at the Club. He also suggested I was mentally unstable.”

Buckley offered an immediate response on Twitter.

Replying to Lumumba, the ex-Pies coach said: “Heritier, I offer you the opportunity to put a full and uncut version of our conversations on public record so as to provide context to our conversations and the support that was provided to you above and beyond that which could be reasonably expected in the circumstances.”

Originally published as Heritier Lumumba releases secret tape recordings of former Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley