The Football Association of Malawi (FAM) has taken over maintenance of Kamuzu Stadium from government amid fears of sanctions if it is in bad shape for Flames 2018 World Cup preliminary qualifying match against Tanzania this Sunday.
Government, which owns the stadium, is solely responsible for maintenance of the facility, but FAM secretary general Suzgo Nyirenda said the stadium is rarely renovated; hence, their intervention.
“Every time a match is staged at the stadium, the pitch is supposed to be cleaned and the artificial grass straightened, but this rarely happens,” he said.
He said Sunday’s game match commissioner assigned by Federation of International Football Associations (Fifa) is expected to inspect the stadium on Saturday.
Nyirenda said his findings will be sent to Fifa where sanctions may be imposed if the stadium was not in good condition.
“The findings may not have effects on the match against Tanzania, but his overall analysis and Fifa could punish us. We do not want our home games to be played in Mozambique because we did not take care of our stadium,” he said.
Nyirenda said the soccer governing body expects to spend about K500 000 to clean the artificial turf and other maintenance works.
Meanwhile, Kamuzu Stadium manager Ambilike Mwaungulu said they fail to conduct maintenance because most of the times government delays to release funding.
“The money we use to carry out renovations is approved by Treasury, so sometimes they delay and we have no choice, but to delay our activities,” he said.
Mwaungulu was, however, quick to point out that they refund FAM the money they use to maintain the stadium.
“We usually pay back the money except the funds which they use to hire a tractor to repair the artificial turf,” he said.