Azam Tigers FC has accused Super League of Malawi (Sulom) and Football Association of Malawi (FAM) of blocking its efforts to stop Be Forward Wanderers from featuring five players following a breach of agreement over K5.5 million transfer fee balance.
The five players embroiled in the transfer wrangle are Isaac Kaliati, Stanely Sanudi, Mike Kaziputa, Kondwani Lufeyo and Kondwani Kumwenda.
The Kau-Kau Boys’ chairperson Sydney Chikoti said according to the agreement, the Nomads were supposed to pay K11.6 million by the end of first round of the TNM Super League, failing which they were not supposed to use the players in the second round.
However, all the five players featured in the Nomads’ second round first game against Civo United which they lost 0-1 at Kamuzu Stadium on Sunday.
Said Chikoti: “The agreement was that Wanderers would pay us K6 million upfront and then pay us the balance in three instalments at the end of April, May and June respectively, but they only honoured the initial payment [K6 million]. Even when we had confirmation that there was money at the bank, when we went there we would be told that they had been instructed not to issue payment.
“Apart from Wanderers themselves, Sulom and FAM also co-signed as witnesses. But unfortunately, the two institutions [Sulom and FAM] are failing to enforce the terms of that agreement.
“Technically, Wanderers are using these players illegally, it is a simple and straightforward issue, but being a small club the powers that be [Sulom and FAM] have deliberately turned a deaf ear to our concerns.”
The Tigers boss further said it is frustrating that while they invest a lot to identify and develop players, their efforts are frustrated by teams such as Wanderers.
However, Wanderers general secretary Mike Butao yesterday denied breaching the agreement.
“Let me clarify that the players which our current committee bought [Kaliati and Sanudi] are all fully paid for and the players they are claiming money for are Lufeyo, Kumwenda and Kaziputa and these are players that have been playing for Wanderers for four years now and these are issues that were resolved before.
“[Actually] there is documentation from the past that shows that Lufeyo and Kumwenda were swapped with Bernard Harawa and Mapopa Musukwa. However, Tigers have deemed it convenient to resurrect these issues. Nevertheless, we are talking to them. Our sponsorship doesn’t cover cash for old debts. So, we can only pay slowly from other sources and Tigers need to understand that,” said Butao.
However, a copy of the agreement which The Nation has seen, shows that it involved all the five players.
On his part, Sulom general secretary Williams Banda faulted Tigers for not informing them when Wanderers defaulted payment.
“Yes, we co-signed the agreement as witnesses, but when they got part of the cash that information was not shared nether did they communicate when Wanderers defaulted payment.
“Nevertheless, we are meeting both teams tomorrow to try and resolve the matter,” said Banda who further clarified that according to Sulom records, Wanderers have so far paid K7.5 million, leaving them with a balance of K4 million.n