Lawson Nakoma quits Blantyre United


Lawson Nakoma—owner, sponsor and the face of Blantyre United— has, due to general frustration with the domestic football climate, pulled out of the TNM Super League strugglers, to cast a shadow of doubt on the team’s future.

In a letter dated October 18 2017, addressed to United General Secretary, Malekano Chisoma, Nakoma said he has quit football administration because he can no longer continue spending his personal money on the team when football authorities are failing to protect clubs.

“Consequently, I regret that, this decision directly affects my position at Blantyre United FC which I have to relinquish. It is unfortunate that this decision comes at a time the team is not performing well and is in serious danger of being relegated. But I am hoping that you guys will put in all you can to keep it afloat. We have been there before and I am sure you will pull through,” Nakoma wrote with a copy to club Chairperson, Peter Tsamwa, and Administration Manager, Anthony Kafuwa.


In an interview on Thursday, Nakoma, who has been with the team from the time it evolved from Escom Reserves in the Premier Division a decade ago, cited reluctance by Super League of Malawi (Sulom) and Football of Malawi (Fam) to level the playing field as the main reason for his decision.

“I am so frustrated by the whole system. The game is run by a cartel and I cannot be spending in excess of K3 million every month on the team, when all I get are frustrations.

“A number of issues such as Sulom clearing our player Fraston Chisi to join Mzuni without our consent and Fam failing to have us get our cut [development fee] for the transfer of Dalitso Sailesi from Nyasa Big Bullets to Lusaka Dynamos, to poor officiation.


“Fam and Sulom do not have the heart to protect small teams. On Dalitso, Fam are saying Bullets will pay us when they have the money, yet Dynamos already paid Bullets. For Sulom, we told Mzuni that we can sell the player at K350,000 and before they could pay, Sulom cleared the player using our verbal discussion as evidence that we had authorised the transfer of the player,” Nakoma said.

Bullets sold Sailesi to Dynamos at K22 million and since he is under-23, Fifa regulations state that such a player’s original team is entitled to a developmental fee.

When Sailesi was being sold to the Zambian side, Bullets administrator Macward Themba said the player’s contract did not have a clause entitling United to such a cut.

Nakoma insisted that he was not quitting due to the imminent relegation, saying it was not the first time that United have been relegated. United are second from bottom with 12 points.

Sulom General Secretary, Williams Banda, speaking in general on the frustrations of small teams over officiation, said the clubs also contribute to the problem by not paying registration fees for the expenses of rotating referees.

Banda also accused the clubs of shunning pre-match meetings which address issues of officiation.

Fam President, Walter Nyamilandu, on Thursday said it was regrettable that local football was losing Nakoma who has contributed massively to the development of the game.

“There are rules and regulations which Fam follows. The issue is that money is a problem for clubs. It is not easy running a club in the Super League. There is a financial constraint.

“I feel for Lawson. When people are making decisions to go into the Super League, they need to be clear of what it takes. That is why we introduced Club Licensing System so that clubs can tick in all the boxes, including on the financial requirements,” Nyamilandu said.

Nakoma has quit days after Tigers Technical Advisor, Robin Alufandika, and Chairperson, Sydney Chikoti, said they were equally frustrated by poor officiation and they might contemplate pulling out their personal support to the Kau Kau.

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