Super League of Malawi (Sulom) has urged sports journalists to help in marketing the game of football to the corporate world by avoiding negative publicity.
Sulom legal adviser Gilbert Mittawa made the appeal on Friday at a day-long Sports Writers Association (Swam) workshop, which was aimed at giving platform to Super League first-round post-mortem at Crown Hotel in Lilongwe.
The workshop, which also launched Swam’s Code of Professional Conduct Standards for scribes, was conducted under the theme Enhancing Sports Media Credibility in 2015 season.
Mittawa said negative publicity scares potential sponsors of the sport.
“If we chase away sponsors, it is the people of this country that will suffer, including you writers, Sulom and players. I am not saying, we should not report about hooliganism or violence. You have a duty to help in marketing the sport,” said Mittawa.
He said journalists should take a leaf from the British media on patriotism.
“We have not observed at any point the British media leaving the coverage of the game and focus on any acts of violence as is the case here in Malawi. Let’s learn from them,” said Mittawa.
Both Swam president Peter Kanjere and board chairperson Gracian Tukula thanked Sulom for the workshop, saying scribes need to be discharging their duties professionally.
“As reporters, we need to respect ourselves and respect the profession. Sometimes, we get carried away with the environment. As [Swam] we are not ready to work with dubious reporters. Let our conduct be guided by our ethics, “said Kanjere.
Fifa instructor Verson Lwanja, who took the workshop through football rules of the game, said there is need for reporters to be well equipped with rules of the game to avoid misleading the public.