Be Forward Wanderers efforts to persuade Be- Forward Limited- to continue bankrolling the side ended in disappointment as the Japanese firm officially notified the club that it will stop sponsoring the team on December 31 this year.
Wanderers Chairperson Simon Sikwese confirmed the upshot.
“We have received official communication from Japan which says starting from January 1, 2021 we will no longer be under Be Forward Limited. It is time to move forward to see our next step,” he said.
Be Forward started sponsoring Wanderers in 2015 before the contract was extended in 2018.
The contract was expected to expire next year but the Japanese company has been forced to terminate the contract following loss of business due to coronavirus pandemic. The sponsorship was pegged at K150 million.
Following the development, Sikwese said his committee has been given a daunting task to hunt for sponsorship. He expressed confidence that Wanderers will secure a better deal soon.
He said the club would work jointly with the supporters to fundraise for the club.
“Wanderers supporters have been supportive as they contribute money which is channeled towards players’ welfare,” Sikwese said.
Be Forward representative, Mike Butao, who is the teams former General Secretary could not be reached for comment.
Football analyst George Kaudza Masina was not surprised with Be Forward Limited’s sponsorship withdraw saying the previous Wanderers administration lacked transparency and accountability.
“I remember there was a time when Wanderers wanted to fire their former GS but the sponsor stepped in and threatned to stop sponsoring the club. Maybe this sponsorship was not for Wanderers but for certain individuals. Lessons learnt, Wanderers are a big side and they need to do things accordingly,” he said.
Wanderers are sailing through troubled waters as the new administration found debt amounting to over K70 million.
Their course was made difficult after Be Forward Limited reduced sponsorship by 50 percent due to Covid-19 pandemic crisis.