No cover-up of Lumumba claims: Buckley

Steve Larkin

Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley has promised the AFL club won't sweep Heritier Lumumba's racism accusations under the proverbial carpet.

Buckley believes his character is being questioned but is adamant he never heard Lumumba being called a "chimp" during his playing career at the Magpies.

"The only mouth I have heard that nickname out of was Heritier's himself when he told me about it, that is categoric," Buckley told reporters on Wednesday.

Collingwood's integrity committee is investigating Lumumba's comments that there was a racist culture at the club during his 10-year AFL career.

Lumumba said he was nicknamed "chimp" during his career at the Mapgies which ended in 2014.

Lumumba wanted the club to publicly acknowledge the racist culture, which he said the club didn't have a desire to deal with at the time.

Buckley pledged a thorough investigation by the club's integrity committee.

"Clearly my character is being questioned ... and I know where I stand in that regard," he said.

"But we will do this the right way and we will do it with the right people and we will do it with integrity.

"We are not about sweeping anything under the carpet here.

"We want to learn about it and we want the truth to be told because that is the basis of the investigation."

Lumumba, who now lives overseas, said he wouldn't participate in the investigation.

"There are obviously a lot of details that need to be unearthed and shared and spoken about with an open mind and an open heart so that we can address this situation, we can address Heritier's experience," Buckley said.

"Not to sweep it under the carpet and not to necessarily adjust the result, but to learn from it and hopefully to be better from it.

"That is why we have undertaken this process.

"It's crucial ... some of the truths of some have been shared publicly but it's our job as a football club to listen to our people, to learn from our people and to respect and value our people.

"That is why this process is critically important because everyone that comes into this place is critically important to us and it needs to be an environment which respects all."

Two of Lumumba's teammates at the time, Chris Dawes and Brent Macaffer, have confirmed they heard Lumumba being called a chimp.

"We are trying to gather everyone's perspectives and these perspectives are new perspectives, it's new information," Buckley said of Dawes and Macaffer.

"The integrity committee have decided and are committed to finding out what that truth was ... they will be speaking to everyone they can to have an understanding, what were the circumstances and what we can learn from them.

"It's everyone person's perogative to share and to be involved as they see fit.

"But the club's position is really clear. We will be going in a really thorough manner to learn and to improve and to be better for our people from this."