Government has proposed fixed charges for hiring out Kamuzu Stadium in Blantyre which will see match organisers coughing up to K5 million to use the facility.
The move is aimed at generating revenue for utility bills and to maintain the newly-rehabilitated facility to its present condition, according to the stadium owners Ministry of Labour, Youth, Sports and Manpower Development.
Once approved, the new charges will replace the old system in which the stadium owners were getting 25 percent from gate revenue.
In the new hiring guidelines which have been circulated to stakeholders, the stadium will be hired out at K4 million for a TNM Super League Blantyre derby involving Nyasa Big Bullets and Be Forward Wanderers.
A Super League match involving either the Nomads or Bullets and another club will be at K1.5 million.
Cup games involving Bullets and Wanderers will be K5 million while a cup game involving either of the two giants and another club will be at K2 million. Any cup final will be at K5 million.
Cup matches not involving Bullets or Wanderers will be at K1 million while league matches not involving the two sides will be at K500 000.
International matches have been pegged at K5 million while international friendly matches are at K3 million.
“Conditions set in this document are applicable to all users whether local or international who intend to hire Kamuzu Stadium premises or erect billboards. These hiring conditions are effective July 1 2018. The booking conditions can be reviewed without giving any prior notice to clients.
“The booking shall be effective from the date that these conditions are signed by all concerned parties and a deposit of 50 percent or full hiring fees is paid at least two weeks before the event. Stadium management shall only allow an event to take place upon payment of full hiring fees unless otherwise directed,” reads the circular to stakeholders.
Government has since called for a stakeholders meeting to be held today at the facility to discuss the new guidelines.
Director of sports Jameson Ndalama said the meeting will discuss the guidelines before they are effected.
“I cannot pre-empt everything. Let’s just say we have ideas on what should be done to get rid of problems we have been facing in the past at the stadium. But before implementation, we need input from other stakeholders,” he said.
Football Association of Malawi (FAM) general secretary Alfred Gunda said the association would meet to discuss the proposed charges.
“We got the letter on the meeting and the new charges. Our team is discussing the issue before we meet the stadium owners,” he said.
Asked what he makes of the charges on Malawi national football team use of the facility, Gunda said the Flames are government’s responsibility.
“Who is responsible for the national team? Who does the national team represent? Who pays for Flames’ expenses? So should a national team pay for using a government-owned stadium? If all these question point to government, then why should the Flames pay for using the stadium?” he said.
On their part, Super League of Malawi (Sulom) treasurer Tiya Somba-Banda said the new charges do not suit the environment.
“Anyway, they have called us to the meeting, so we will hear from them,” he said.
Nyasa Big Bullets chief executive officer Fleetwood Haiya said they would comment after the meeting.
“I understand they want us to discuss [the proposed charges]. I am not sure if they have already passed that resolution. We can only comment upon reaching a consensus thus after the meeting,” he said.
FAM’s Confederation of African Football (CAF) stadium inspector Maxwell Mtonga was expected to inspect the stadium yesterday ahead of its opening after almost two years. n