Players from 14 Super League clubs have put their careers on the line following revelations that they were playing without insurance cover.
Malawi News understands that out of 16 Super League teams, only Nyasa Big Bullets and Silver Strikers have insurance policies for their players.
The development is a setback in the modern game as some players curtailed their careers after suffering horrific injuries.
Sadly, such players were not duly compensated due to lack of insurance cover catering for medical treatment, among others.
Some of the notable players whose promising careers suffered a huge setback following injuries include former Flames and Be Forward Wanderers attacker Maxwell Chirwa, late Malawi women’s national football team coach Stuart Mbolembole and ex-Flames fullback Elvis Kafoteka.
Malawi under-20 women’s national football team head coach Maggie Chombo-Sadik is also seeking compensation after sustaining a fracture on her left leg while training her charges prior to the return match of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics Under-20 Women’s qualifiers against Zimbabwe.
Some of the teams blamed their failure to insure players on lack of sponsorship.
Civo Service United General Secretary Ronald Chiwaula confirmed that their players were not on any insurance cover.
“Our players enjoy the same benefits that Civil servants get because they are registered as civil servants on non-established positions. They are not entitled to pension scheme but the club is responsible for a coffin and transport for them, a wife and children in case one dies. Nevertheless, we encourage them to register insurance and medical cover on their own,” Chiwaula said.
Be Forward Wanderers General Secretary Victor Maunde said they were planning to insure their players.
“Our chairperson Simon Sikwese is the one dealing with the issue. Last time we discussed the issue he was tasked to do that so I might not be in a position to shed more light on the matter. The last time we talked on the matter the players were not insured,” he said.
Bullets Chief Administration Officer Albert Chigoga said their players are insured and also have medical cover.
Last season, Bullets used their medical cover to provide specialised treatment to injured captain John Lanjesi which cost about K2 million.
Silver Strikers are also reported to have put all their players and technical panel on insurance but the team’s board Chairperson Victor Madhlopa neither confirmed nor denied doing so.
Football Players Association General Secretary Ernest Mangani said they have copies showing that Silver players were insured.
Former Bullets General Secretary Higger Mkandawire said it was a setback that a lot of teams did not insure their players.
“This is a worrisome development. We expected the authorities to make insurance cover mandatory for all the Super League teams in the country,” he said.
Peter Fote is a Sports Journalist with huge experience in radio and Television reporting, production and presentation. He once worked with Malawi Broadcasting Corporation (MBC) and is currently working for Times Media Group.