The Chifundo Charity Shield match between Nyasa Big Bullets and Be Forward Wanderers has been embroiled in controversy after counterfeit tickets were sold at some outlets.
In an interview on Sunday, Lilongwe Police spokesperson Kingsley Dandaula said they alerted Football Association of Malawi (FAM) on the anomaly, but the officials cleared the tickets.
“After comparing the features our officers were suspicious and consulted FAM officials who cleared the suspicious tickets,” said Dandaula.
On his part, FAM head of marketing Limbani Matola said the tickets in question were indeed counterfeit and that they have reported the matter to Lilongwe Police, though Dandaula denied receiving a complaint from the association.
Six of the tickets in question, which The Nation has seen, were for the covered stands and had the same serial number 6 172.
When purchased in advance, the original tickets of this category were selling at K3 000 (about $4.7) while those bought on match day cost K4 500 (about $7).
Wanderers general secretary Mike Butao said it was unfortunate that FAM allowed the questionable tickets to be sold.
“The gate management meeting we had resolved that FAM and Sulom should be responsible for printing of tickets. How do you expect the clubs to have faith in the system if this indeed happened?” Butao wondered.
Bullets interim general secretary Kelvin Moyo called on for FAM to investigate the matter.
The match grossed K11 477 000 (about $18 000) out of which K5 785 545 (about $9 082) was used to pay for expenses.
FAM head of finance Christopher Mdolo said the fraud has affected the association.
“We spent K7.5 million to organise this match. We spent K2.5 million on the two teams. We also spent K2.5 million on administrative costs like buying of medals, trophies and other logistics,” he said.
The proceeds from the match are expected to be used to buy trolleys for Kamuzu Central Hospital (KCH) in Lilongwe.
The game was a curtain- raiser for the new Super League season which kicks off this Saturday.
Bullets clinched the shield after beating Wanderers 2-0 with goals from Chiukepo Msowoya and Muhammad Sulumba.