Football Association of Malawi (FAM) has rejected a proposal by some aspirants in the Central Region Football Association (CRFA) to have an independent electoral committee manage their elections.
FAM says the current CRFA statutes mandate the general secretary to receive and process nomination papers while the returning officer is FAM.
Reads the FAM letter to CRFA in part: “The current CRFA statutes mandate the CRFA general secretary to receive and process nomination where returning officer is FAM.
“As returning officer, FAM shall ensure that the process is fair and credible in accordance with the statutes of CRFA and to this effect FAM will require a copy of all nominations to administer election.”
In an interview yesterday, FAM general secretary Alfred Gunda secretary said the current status quo remains as stipulated in the regional league statutes.
In a letter to FAM, two aspirants Simeon Lijenje and Owen Munthali, who are vying for vice-chairperson and executive member respectively, referred to article 50 and 53 of FAM constitution which states that there shall be an independent electoral committee to oversee the electoral process.
Reacting to FAM’s response in an interview yesterday, Lijenje faulted the soccer government body, saying the arrangement will defeat the purpose of ensuring that the elections are free and fair.
“You may need to note that all statutes of FAM member associations are required to be in line with FAM statutes article 22 (1). It is sad that FAM in its respond is not creating a level and democratic playing field. Anyway, we will approach the FAM secretariat once again and push them for a clear response,” he said.
Southern Region Football Association chairperson Raphael Humba said he had no problem with having independent electoral committee, but the arrangement needs more time.
On his part, Northern Region Football Association chairperson Lameck Khonje said regional football election process is a constitutional issue and should be respected.
“This is a constitutional issue spelled in the regional association statutes and we cannot just change,” he said.
George Kaudza Masina, a soccer analyst, said issues of transparency might be compromised in the current set up.
Another analyst, George Chiusiwa, said FAM should have accepted the demands as it can be a recipe for disaster.