Two Big Bullets fans yesterday successfully obtained a restraining order from the Blantyre High Court against the trustees’ meddling in the club’s management.
Peter Tembo, Alick Kazonga and five other fans celebrated outside the court after learning through lawyer Lusungu Gondwe that Judge Rowland Mbvundula had granted the order that invalidates the trustees’ recent decisions.
“It means the trustees have been restrained from making management decisions of the club. As trustees, they are just custodians of the club. If they continue, they will be in contempt of court,” Gondwe said in a brief interview at the court.
Tembo and Kazonga also challenged Bullets supporters’ committee vice-chairperson Stone Mwamadi’s earlier claims that they are not registered members of the club, saying they were ready to produce their identity cards.
“They are not being honest by questioning our membership. There is no way they can know the identity of every supporter. They must verify our membership with the secretariat,” said Tembo, with Kazonga adding that he was happy the club can now focus on hosting Al Hilal of Sudan at the beginning of next month.
The trustees were not represented during the hearing that lasted about 15 minutes in the chambers.
Trustees general secretary Jim Kalua yesterday said he was still unaware of their summoning by the court.
“I thought it [summons] was supposed to be hand delivered? Do we need to be communicated through the media? There are a lot of issues and an AGM, which some quarters are trying to run away from, will address them. Very soon the board of trustees will announce date and venue,” said Kalua.
However, Gondwe said the trustees were served with all the summons, copies of which he showed The Nation.
If the trustees had turned up, the court was to determine whether the decisions of the defendants suspending [head of marketing Dan Mbepuwa] and reinstating members [supporters’ committee chairperson Isaac Jomo Osman] of the club “has legal leg to stand on”.
“Whether an interlocutory injunction be granted restraining the defendants from continuing to interfere with affairs of the executive board, whether the defendants should bear the costs occasioned by the proceeding,” added the court documents.
Bullets trustees, against the position of chairperson Kondie Msungama and general secretary Harold Fote, suspended Mbebuwa for failing to provide a financial report. The trustees also reinstated Osman.
However, the court proceedings could be contrary to Fifa statutes, which discourage taking football matters to ordinary courts of law.
The statutes state that all football disputes must never be taken to an ordinary court of law “unless the Fifa regulations or binding legal provisions specifically provide for or stipulate recourse to ordinary courts of law”.
Bullets are clutching to the last straws of their 2015 CAF Champions League campaign after the 4-0 battering by Al Hilal of Sudan on Sunday.