Malawi National Council of Sports (MNCS) has put tough guidelines for all sports associations in the country.
The guidelines came into effect on September 20 2022, just two days before the Sports Indaba in Lilongwe.
However, all the associations have been given six months to ensure that their constitutions, regulations, policies and any such instruments are aligned with the guidelines.
Among other things, the sports implementing body has set a bachelor’s degree as the minimum qualification for the position of chairperson for all associations and that all associations should have a strategic plan and related implementation plan.
“All elected office-bearers shall hold office for a maximum of two terms, provided that at the commencement of these guidelines, any term not served in full shall be regarded as first term. National sports associations shall be at liberty to set the period for each term, provided that each term shall not exceed three years,’’ the guidelines read.
In addition, all proposed amendments to constitutions of associations will be vetted and approved by MNCS before they are approved at their respective associations.
A diploma has been set as the minimum qualification for the position of general secretary while a certificate is the minimum for the position of treasurer.
If fully implemented, the guidelines will likely affect some sports associations including Football Association of Malawi (Fam) and Netball Association of Malawi (Nam).
Fam President Walter Nyamilandu welcomed the guidelines.
“The chairperson for Sports Council [Sunduzwayo Madise] was specific that [this will be the case] as long as the guidelines were consistent with statutes of sports federations. I presume that there will be a need for alignment,’’ Nyamilandu said.
At its meeting in December 2018, Fam scrapped off academic qualification for executive committee membership. The term of office for the president was restricted to a maximum of three terms in line with Fifa statutes.
Nam General Secretary Isaac Chimwala was yet to respond to our questionnaire as we went to press.
However, sports analyst George Kaudza-Masina said the guidelines will bring sanity to sports associations.
’’The thinking of MNSC is very progressive. Leading an association is serious business, such that it needs informed leadership. Yes, others might argue that a degree is just another qualification but the bottom line is that such a qualification aids in strategic thinking,’’ Kaudza Masina said.
The guidelines are aimed at promoting the value of good governance and best practices in sport management and administration for the good of sports and also assisting national sports associations and other stakeholders in appreciating and understanding the standards and conduct that are expected, respected and valued within the sports sector.