Nyasa Big Bullets takeover steering committee chairperson Noel Lipipa has urged the team’s followers to slow down on pressurising sponsors Nyasa Manufacturing Company (NMC) to meet conditions of the club’s takeover.
He said this amid pressure from some quarters for the cigarette manufacturer to meet conditions of the memorandum of understanding (MoU).
Said Lipipa: “Nyasa are yet to meet most of the conditions, but there is commitment on their part to adhere to the agreement.
“We should not scare the sponsor. We need to take into consideration the team’s state before Nyasa took over and I am sure the supporters wouldn’t want the team to find itself in such an unfortunate state again [if the current sponsor decided to walk away].
“I am not saying they should not be held accountable, but we need to do it in a proper way.”
The former Bullets chairperson, who is also the club’s director responsible for sales and marketing, also said they will consult the supporters on whether it will be necessary for NMC to construct a stadium when there is already a commitment by government to build one for them at Moneymen along Chikwawa Road.
“There is already notable progress regarding the project in that a contractor has already been identified and government allocated K1.6 billion [K800 million each for Bullets and Be Forward Wanderers] in the 2019/20 National Budget for the project.
“So, the question that needs to be answered is: Will it be necessary to have two stadiums? Because we have to look at issues like maintenance costs as well,” said Lipipa, who is also legislator for Blantyre City South.
Bullets’ stadium to be constructed by government is expected to cost K3.8 billion.
The club’s board president Konrad Buckle told a press conference on Thursday that NMC is committed to fulfil its obligations as prescribed in the MoU.
He said already, they have spent K1.2 billion since taking over the club and that plans are underway to buy a brand new bus estimated to cost K90 million.
Among other terms, NMC committed to take over the team’s verified and confirmed debts and liabilities, which would be settled within a period of six months.
NMC has since settled the bulk of the debt, which was estimated to be in the excess of K150 million.
They also committed to acquire a brand new team bus within six months; construct a stadium of not less than 10 000 capacity within five years, acquire a training ground within a year and construct three clubhouses—on in each region complete with offices—within three years.
NMC further committed to set up an academy within a year and list the People’s Team on stock exchange.