Silver Strikers raided the Master Security Services camp on Friday and snatched defender Hygiene Mwandepeka from right under the newly promoted side’s nose.
The Central Bankers’ officials reportedly engaged Mwandepeka in discussions while the player was in camp with the Flames in preparation for the Saturday’s Bingu National Stadium opening ceremony match against Chinese Super League side, Guangzhou R&F.
The former Karonga United defender, who can also feature in midfield, has signed a four-year contract with the Lilongwe giants.
At the beginning of last week, Karonga United and Master Security Services officials had announced that Mwandepeka and two other players, Khumbo Msowoya and Green Msowoya had moved to the Central Region Football League champions.
However, Silver Strikers General Secretary, Thabo Chakaka- Nyirenda, said he knew nothing about the Master Security deal, maintaining that Silver had signed Mwandepeka from Karonga United.
“We scrutinised his contract and discovered that he has less than six weeks to the end of his contract with Karonga United. According to Fifa and Fam rules, a player who has six months or less to the end of his contract is at liberty to join another team. We signed Mwandepeka based on that,” Nyirenda said.
But he declined to disclose the amount involved in the transaction, saying the club will do so at the right time.
Master Security Services General Secretary, Zachariah Nyirenda said he was not aware of the development.
“I know nothing about Mwandepeka signing for Silver Strikers. We took him on board alongside other players from Karonga United, so Karonga United and the player himself can explain better,” Nyirenda said.
Karonga United Chairman, Alufeyo Chipanga, confirmed that Mwandepeka is a Silver Strikers player.
“As a club, we had agreed on payment for the three players with Master Security and what remained was for the players to make their personal choices. Our belief is that Mwandepeka was not happy with what Master Security offered, and he opted for Silver Strikers,” Chipanga said.
He too declined to disclose the amount Silver have paid for Mwandepeka, saying they reached an agreement with the Bankers to keep the amount confidential.
Mwandepeka could not comment on the matter, saying he was travelling at the time and asked to be called later.
The player made his name after scoring the only goal that condemned then defending champions Nyasa Big Bullets to their first defeat of the season.
The win was also Karonga’s first of the 2016 TNM Super League.
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