GOvernment, through the Malawi National Council of Sports (MNCS), yesterday ordered Football Association of Malawi (FAM) not to accept a K44 million donation from Prophet Shepherd Bushiri.
However, FAM defied the order and accepted the donation which is meant to meet the K45 million budget shortfall for the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations’ qualifiers against Guinea’s Syli Nationale.
FAM general secretary Suzgo Nyirenda confirmed having received correspondence from the council on the issue.
“They told us that we need to seek approval from government because both FAM and the national team are public entities.
“But we could not turn down such a ‘miraculous rescue’ package because we were stranded and government made it clear that there was no money,” said Nyirenda.
MNCS executive secretary George Jana confirmed having issued the instruction, insisting that it was normal and there was nothing sinister.
“That’s the norm. It is normal protocol. FAM and the Flames are public entities and, therefore, by extension, it is a donation to government and it has to be scrutinised,” he said.
Asked what will happen since FAM had ignored the instruction, the Council boss said: “It will be formalised.”
Bushiri, who arrived at Chiwembe Technical Centre in the company of his wife with pomp and tight security, said the donation was in response to a request by Flames coach Ernest Mtawali.
The prophet, appearing regal in a blue striped suit, white shirt, maroon necktie and maroon shoes, said: “ I was informed a day before yesterday (by the national coach) that there is an emergency need for the Flames.
“And yesterday, I decided to come over here with help.
“I just landed with my wife an hour ago and will be flying back [to Johannesburg] today.”
He said although the request was made at short notice, “the need of coming here was huge as the president of the country encourages patriotism and as a loyal citizen who loves the country and the Flames, I decided to come and support.”
He said the primary reason is to assist towards the development of the game. n