Football Association of Malawi (Fam) president Walter Nyamilandu and Super League of Malawi (Sulom) president Tiya Somba-Banda have admitted that it will not be easy to implement their manifestos in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic this year.
In separate interviews, both Nyamilandu and Somba-Banda were still optimistic of implementing some projects despite the pandemic. Nyamilandu, who is in his fifth term after defeating former first president James Mwenda in last year’s December election, admitted that prevailing circumstances are beyond control.
“Critical for us during this period is to survive, recover and save the human capital that is at the heart of the game and preserve the future of the game. We live on hope that life will return to normal sooner than later and that football will bounce back in a very strong way. This is what is keeping our dreams alive. These dreams will keep our vision of Raising the Bar alive,” Nyamilandu said in a written response.
“I believe everything has a season and this too shall pass. All I know is that our talented players might be subdued but they are not diminished and they are burning with serious desire to play football again. The fans are equally yearning for football to resume because this is what they love most. Such is the burning platform that will propel us forward when football resumes,” he said.
The Fam boss, who is also Fifa Council executive member said the implementation of the relief programmes was a clear indication of how much the value welfare of the players and officials.
“We have implemented relief programmes to keep the core fabric of the beautiful game alive as the pandemic is raging. This is what my manifesto has always been about. Welfare of the players and officials has always been our driving force. We have implemented exciting and meaningful interventions that underpin Raising the Bar manifesto during this period of the pandemic focused on saving lives, knowing that the game is nothing without actors and conductors,” he added.
In his 60-page manifesto, Nyamilandu focused on integrity, discipline, passion and unity. Among others, Nyamilandu promised to raise subventions to all member associations as well as transforming them from operating like “village entities”.
On his part, Somba-Banda also said the Covid-19 has halted the implementation of the manifesto.
“Pretty tough as football on the ground is not being played and surely Covid-19 will derail the implementation of most of the strategies. However, the reforms we are embarking on are still feasible and we will implement,” Somba- Banda added.
In his manifesto titled “Leading Football Business” which focused on commercialisation, Somba-Banda promised to create and harness a conducive environment for commercialisation of clubs. Among others, Somba-Banda promised Caf Champions League package for TNM Super League champions to enable them take part in the continental club showpiece.
He also promised to market the game and increase gate revenue through implementation of advance ticket sales and e-ticketing.