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Clubs cry foul over TV rights

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Albert Chigoga

Some Super League teams have asked Super League of Malawi (Sulom) to release details of income realised through broadcasting rights during last season’s TNM Super League games.

This comes after Football Association of Malawi (Fam) announced that Mpira Television pilot project grossed K26.3 million in broadcasting rights in the Airtel Top 8 Cup.

Out of K26.3 million, the eight teams who participated in the Airtel Top 8 Cup will share K14.5 million whereas Sulom and Fam will each get 10 percent.

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The rest of the money went to production and administration costs.

In reaction to the development, Bullets Chief Administrator Albert Chigoga said it was too early to celebrate.

“At this point, we cannot celebrate or make sense out of these numbers until we carefully review them before making more sensible reaction. However, the quick take is that we expected something better,” Chigoga said.

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Champions Nyasa Big Bullets and runners-up Silver Strikers are the top earners after pocketing K2.6 million each followed by semifinalists Mighty Wanderers and Civil Service United at K1.9 million each.

On his part, Civil General Secretary Ronald Chiwaula, while commending Fam for releasing the details, said they expected Sulom to release revenue generated during last season’s league matches.

“It is a stepping stone and we encourage authorities to do more. Going forward, we demand accountability and transparency on Super League games broadcasting rights,” Chiwaula said.

Karonga United General Secretary Ramsey Simwaka said time had come for Sulom to disclose revenue generated through broadcasting rights.

Several matches in the top flight league were broadcast live on local radio stations with few selected matches were beamed on television stations.

Mpira TV, which Fam owns, conducted test broadcasts on league matches until April 25 2021.

However, the test broadcasts were only done in Blantyre despite matches being played in all venues across the country.

Sulom President Tiya Somba-Banda and Treasurer Malinda Chinyama did not answer our calls.

Fam announced that a total of K6.5 million was realised through radio broadcasting whereas Airtel Value-adding Rights Package grossed K12 million, representing 24 and 45 percent of the total revenue, respectively.

Mpira TV subscription, which attracted 2,595 subscribers for a period of five to seven weeks, grossed K5.5 million whereas a total of K1.5 million was realised through Mpira TV feed.

A total of K700,000 was realised through Mpira TV advertising.

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