Civo United and Azam Tigers have expressed disappointment at Nyasa Big Bullets’ unveiling of players Emmanuel Zoya, John Lanjesi and Enerst Kakhobwe as unprofessional.
Bullets unveiled Tigers goalkeeper Kakhobwe, Blantyre United striker Muhammad Sulumba and Civo defenders Lanjesi and Zoya at the official signing in ceremony of a sponsorship deal with Nyasa Manufacturing Company (NMC) in Blantyre on Monday.
The People’s Team chairperson Sam Chilunga said the four have signed pre-contracts and further claimed that their clubs gave permission.
“We asked their clubs (that) we want to engage with these people….I also sent the vice-general secretary [Kelvin Moyo] to say can you please get hold of the general secretaries of these teams to say we want to socialise with these players. So, they are aware and I would be surprised if tomorrow they say they are not aware,” he said.
Responding to the claims in an interview yesterday, Civo chairperson Osman Fatch said he was disappointed to learn that Bullets unveiled the players who are not theirs.
“After learning that our players have signed pre-contracts at Bullets it came as a shock to me. You only unveil a player who is yours, but Bullets did something unprofessional,” he said.
Meanwhile, Fatch has challenged Bullets to produce a letter to prove that Civo approved that the players should sign pre-contracts and be unveiled.
“Our club doesn’t do short-cuts. If they claim that we okayed the players to do what they did then let them show us the letter,” he said.
Fatch said they have not decided what action to take on the matter.
Transfer statutes specify that a player can only sign a pre-contract at another team if he has six months remaining on his contract.
Civo argue that Bullets flouted the rules because Lanjesi and Zoya’s contracts have more than six months to expire.
In a related development, Civo general secretary Charles Mwenda has said they turned down a counter-offer which Bullets made for their two players.
“Bullets approached us officially asking if they could sign the players and we told them that the value of each player is K4 million. But they made a K2.5 million counter offer for each player and our answer was no,” said Mwenda.
Moyo refused to comment on whether they had written approval from Civo, saying: “If there are issues with Civo we will sort them amongst ourselves and not in the media.”
On his part, Tigers technical director Robin Alufandika also said they did not give Bullets consent to unveil the player let alone let him sign a pre-contract.
“We are shocked that Bullets has chosen to take this unprofessional path. Enerst is our player and they were supposed to ask permission from us,” he said.
However, Moyo seemed to conclude that the goalkeeper is not contracted to Tigers. He said: “Alufandika should show you the contract.”
But the Tigers technical director insisted that they own the player whom they signed from Bvumbwe Research FC last season.
Meanwhile, Super League of Malawi general secretary Williams Banda said it was impossible for them to intervene on the issue because they have not received a complaint from the aggrieved clubs.