Football Association of Malawi (FAM) can afford a sigh of relief after University of Malawi (Unima) shifted its 50th anniversary celebrations from Kamuzu Stadium to College of Medicine to accommodate the Malawi national football team’s 2018 World Cup preliminary round second leg against Tanzania.
The 50th anniversary celebrations will be held on Saturday October 10, a day before the Flames host Taifa Stars at Kamuzu Stadium.
The celebrations coincided with Fifa final inspection of the venue and FAM had fears that the activities on the day, which include football and netball matches, would compromise the condition of the artificial turf before it is inspected.
Unima Assistant Registrar responsible for communications and marketing Peter Mitunda said after discussions among the stakeholders they decided to pave the way for the national team.
“There were a number of reasons of course, but one of them was that some quarters would have been inconvenienced if we had gone on to hold the function at Kamuzu Stadium hence the decision to move to College of Medicine Sports Complex,” Mitunda said.
“We are all one. We also love football and we would like to watch the national team play Tanzania at the stadium after our Saturday function. That’s why this decision was reached and it is in the best interest of the nation.”
FAM general secretary Suzgo Nyirenda thanked Unima for shifting the venue of the anniversary to College of Medicine.
“It’s a welcome development. I must thank Unima administration for their cooperation. They were very understanding and accommodating. We are also grateful to the Ministry of Sports and Culture, the director of sports Jameson Ndalama in particular, for the role he played in making sure we reach a positive end,” Nyirenda said.
Following the change in the Unima celebrations venue, Fifa envoy Anthony Baffoe will inspect the stadium on Saturday morning. Tanzania, who jet in on Thursday, will then train on the pitch on Friday and Saturday afternoon.