Football enthusiasts have to prepare to cough more to watch local games next season after Super League of Malawi (Sulom) revealed plans to adjust upwards gate charges from K500 ($0.89) to K1 000 ($1.79) to cushion the high cost of services like hiring police officers during games.
Sulom general secretary Williams Banda said the rise in cost of services had forced them to consider adjusting upwards the gate charges.
“You will note that right now the cost of services has skyrocketed. Football has not been spared from this trend,” Banda said.
“Come next season supporters should expect to cough more to watch Super League games.”
The Sulom GS said the move to charge some 2015 season games at K1 000 ($1.79) was deliberate to help supporters through the transition.
Though the official gate charges for open stands is at K500 ($0.89), Sulom has been charging K1 000 for some high profile games like the Blantyre derby between Big Bullets and Mighty Be Forward Wanderers and Lilongwe derby between Silver Strikers and Civo United.
Last weekend match between Big Bullets and Silver Strikers was also pegged at K1 000.
“What it means is that next season all games will be at a minimum of K1 000,” he said.
Apart from security, Sulom has to pay other service providers like paramedics, stewards, cashiers, supervisors and ball boys.
Banda said the recent salary and allowances adjustments in the Malawi Police Service (MPS) had affected the cost of hiring police officers.
The allowance adjustments have resulted in junior police officers pocketing K5 000 ($8.9) which is half of their official rate of K10 000 ($18).
Senior police officers now pocket K12 000 ($21) which is also almost half the official allowance of K25 000 ($45).
The GS said they had engaged MPS to consider adjusting downwards the duty allowance.
“The talks are at an advanced stage. We are hopeful that at the end of the discussions, they will consider us,” he said.
“Otherwise, we have no choice, but to raise the gate charges because the current rates can’t cushion the cost of the services.”
Malawi Police Service (MPS) deputy spokesperson Nicholas Gondwa said they are yet to meet Sulom on the matter.
“I am aware of the talks between Sulom and MPS on the issue,” Gondwa said.
“I was briefed by our director of operations, Senior Deputy Commissioner Clifford Bandawe.”
He, however, said a stakeholders meeting on the matter is yet to be convened. n