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Sulom GS seat under microscope

Clubs will discuss the pros and cons of abolishing Super League of Malawi general secretary and treasurer positions during today’s Sulom extra-ordinary general meeting (EGM) in Lilongwe.

Additionally, the indaba will also discuss whether to downsize or bloat the number of teams in the top tier league. Fifa recommended trimming the clubs to 12. Some feel the odd number of 15 teams poses a challenge when balancing the fixtures.

The EGM follows a lengthy consultative process, which Sulom constitutional review committee comprising Gilbert Mittawa, Happy Mkandawire, Dr. Macdonald Mafuta Mwale, Henry Kakhuta Banda and chairperson Dr. Dan Kuwali, spearheaded.

Kuwali declined to comment, but Mittawa and Sulom general secretary, Williams Banda, during the week, confirmed that the clubs would shape the course of the review meant to align the constitution with that of Football Association of Malawi (Fam).

“On agenda, there are issues of voting rights for executive members of Sulom, obligations and rights of teams and an issue of audited accounts for teams. As for teams’ demands for a share from broadcasting rights, that was amended and teams will be getting a share,” Banda explained.

Civo United general secretary, Rashid Ntelela, said his club would propose that clubs should be getting a cut from broadcasting rights whose proceeds, in respect of the current constitution, only goes into Fam and Sulom coffers.

“On the number of teams, our stand is that we should have an even number to ease fixture challenges (whether 14 or 16, we do not have a problem). On abolishing of GS and treasurer posts, our take is that we have to be guided by the international best practice,” Ntelela said on Thursday.

Azam Tigers chairperson, Sydney Chikoti, said the timing was wrong for the EGM to decide on the league size as the current relegation-threatened sides will certainly opt for bloating the league, while promotion candidates from the regional premier divisions will have no voice.

“On the other hand, there is need to get rid of GS position. These functions require full-time person. There is need for an oversight function. If you have an elected GS, who can question him? The same is the case with the treasurer,” Chikoti argued.

Relegation-threatened Fisd Wizards chairperson, Mike Tembo, contributing to the EGM agenda through a recent letter which Malawi News has seen, called for the abolition of GS and treasurer’s posts.

“Trends around are that those positions are operations and need full time staff and not volunteers as is the case right now. Due to this, operational decisions and day-to-day management of the secretariat is hampered not to mention governance structures broken,” Tembo argued.

And true to Chikoti’s fears that the timing of deciding the league size was wrong, Tembo, through the letter suggested bloating the league to 16 teams.

“One proposal is to have the three outgoing and three incoming teams engage in a play-off tournament to find top four teams that would get back into the league, to make it 16,” Tembo explained.

However, Bullets vice-general secretary, Kelvin Moyo, agreed on the need for clubs to benefit from the broadcasting rights adding that there is need for club, Sulom and Fam constitutions to be in tandem on basics such as terms of office bearers.

“Decreasing the number of teams is better. It’s a small country and increasing teams mean more expenditure. As for the GS and treasurer’s posts, it is a norm that Concacaf, Fifa, Uefa and Caf have elected general secretaries who assume the role of CEO. For a treasurer, that post does not exist in most of these bodies,” Moyo said.

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