Football Association of Malawi (FAM) has announced that elite and lower division clubs will each receive $15 000 (about K11 million) to cushion them from the financial impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The money is part of world football governing body Fifa’s $1.5 million Covid-19 relief fund to affiliates.
FAM president Walter Nyamilandu said this yesterday at the Super League of Malawi (Sulom) annual general meeting (AGM) in Lilongwe.
At the half-day summit, delegates from the 16 clubs discussed football restart, post Covid-19 , television broadcasting rights, finances and elected the new Sulom legal advisor.
Nyamilandu assured the clubs, most of which expressed concern over financial challenges, that they will be assissted.
“We have received $500 000 [about K375 million] for the men’s clubs. We will access the other chunk and the women’s share later,” he said.
Malawi, like other Fifa affliates associations, will get a total of $1 million for men’s clubs and $500 000 for women football teams, according to Nyamilandu.
The disbursement of the funds will come at a time clubs are gearing up for football resumption mid next month.
There are fears the games could be played without fans as indicated by government, triggering calls for FAM to consider sourcing more funding for the clubs to cushion their operations.
But Nyamilandu expressed optimism that the state of affairs might change by the time sports returns to the fields.
“We are keeping our fingers crossed that there will be changes. Otherwise, playing without supporters will be tough on football. That said, we will still be exploiting other avenues of generating revenue,” he said.
Clubs have since welcomed the funds disbursement plans.
Civo United general secretary Ronald Chiwaula said it is a timely move.
“We are at a moment when clubs have suffered a lot due to Covid-19. They have not been able to generate revenue as football was dormant,” he said.
During the AGM, delegates elected former Silver Strikers vice-general secretary Innocent Kadammanja as the Sulom legal adviser.
He ammased 20 votes while his closest rival Thabo Chakaka-Nyirenda secured 19 votes while William Nkhoma got five votes.
Kadam’manja said he was excited to be victorious while promising to ensure that Sulom handles disciplinary cases with speed and without bias.
“I have heard the clubs’ complaints regarding disciplinary resolutions and inconsistencies in the outcomes of cases. I would like to assure the clubs that I will do my best to ensure everyone is happy,” he said.