Almost four weeks after Super League of Malawi (Sulom) launched an investigation to establish why the latest episode of the Blantyre derby between Big Bullets and Be Forward Wanderers grossed a meagre K16 million ($29,091), the Nomads have expressed disappointment with the delay of the process.
Despite a massive turnout at Kamuzu Stadium in Blantyre, the derby grossed almost K11 million ($20,000) short of what was realised in the first-round encounter, prompting Sulom to institute investigations after both teams raised suspicion of possible fraud.
Sulom is reported to have engaged the services of Fiscal Police, but Wanderers general secretary Mike Butao said they are not amused that there has been no update on the investigations.
“We have deliberately taken a back seat as the allegations are that some of our supporters were involved and we want the process to be as transparent as possible.
“But we are concerned about the time it is taking to conclude investigations on such a critical issue. We would like to know what exactly happened,” said Butao.
The Nomads main supporters committee treasurer Stanzio Chilambe and secretary Paul Mphepo were forced to step aside to pave way for investigations after they were implicated in the matter while Bullets—who were the host side—suspended their main supporters committee treasurer Bruce Tambwali and secretary Mabvuto Chibambo.
But Butao said if they do not hear anything from Sulom by close of business tomorrow, “we will have no choice but to ask these gentlemen [Mphepo and Chilambe] to resume their duties. They are after all, innocent till proven guilty.
“[Because] this is now the fourth week, but up to now neither Sulom nor the police have ever contacted these two to level charges or hear their side of the story. Over and above that, we would expect Sulom to act promptly on the issue.”
Bullets board of trustees chairperson James Busile who authorised the suspension of Tambwali and Chibambo, said they are still following the issue with keen interest.
“To us this remains a delicate issue until it is thoroughly investigated. So, we are not worried with the delay because it could be that Sulom and police would like to carry out intensive investigations,” said Busile.
But Sulom general secretary Williams Banda on Monday said Fiscal Police is still conducting the investigations.
Blantyre Police publicist Elizabeth Divala said she needed time to follow up on the progress of matter with Fiscal Police. n