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The mess at Bullets

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Nyasa Big Bullets are in big, big problems. Not that this is the first time but the manner in which all trustees have jumped ship after a fall-out with the Supporters Committee leaves the giants in a constitutional crisis.

Previously when the fans, administrators and players disagreed the last resort was on the sober and largely mature trustees. This time around there is no referee.

Now the supporters have lost trust in the trustees, accusing them of misleading the fans into buying the idea of scrapping off General Secretary and Treasurer’s posts.

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The trustees hold the trust of the public. Now the fans accuse the trustees of raping the constitution by coming up with the resolution to scrap off the two posts at a Lilongwe gathering which the supporters claim lacked legal mandate.

The fans, reportedly under the influence of some aspirants for Executive Committee positions, want all posts competed for.

The former trustees were singing a different commercialisation tune that time has come for the hiring of full-time secretariat staff to speed up the commercialisation drive.

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Bullets fans smell a rat. They are convinced that commercialisation means Nyasa Manufacturing Company taking over ownership of the team.

The supporters view Bullets as theirs. That is why the fans, or to put it correctly mob, always want their way or no way.

You have to pave way for their wish or they, using all sorts of guerrilla tactics, crush and drag you out of power.

The fans got rid of the management of Big Bullets, Bullets Holdings Limited and chased Cifu Investments. Now the fans have taken the game right into the trustees’ penalty box.

For reasons that are as irrational as they are selfish, Bullets fans just cannot support the team without necessarily wanting to own it. It is not love for Bullets but love for its money.

That is why outside football, Bullets fans may love music bands such as Black Missionaries and drama groups such as Kwathu, and let them operate freely under private ownership.

But when it comes to Bullets and indeed most big teams the fans want to have a say on the choice of trustees, Executive Committee members, coaches and players.

The fans are the cancer affecting local clubs such as Bullets. All had seemed well a few weeks ago for Bullets when, under the direction of the then trustees, the Supporters Committee held elections in Zomba.

The elections were part of an annual general meeting that, with an exception of Chairperson, Noel Lipipa, resolved to dissolve the Executive Committee and hold

elections.

Suddenly, cracks started appearing as the then trustees’ general secretary, Jim Kalua, said he was not aware of any resolution to hold the elections.

Soon, another trustee and former chairperson, Malinda Chinyama, shared Kalua’s sentiments that there was no need for electing a General Secretary and Treasurer but rather hire qualified secretariat staff to fast-track the commercialisation drive.

The fans still pushed for elections leading to a meeting with the trustees in Lilongwe where a resolution was reached to scrap off the two positions.

The fans appeared to agree with the resolution only to u-turn that the meeting lacked mandate and that all Executive Committee positions be contested for.

“We were misled,” the fans chorused whereas the then trustees’ legal advisor, Gaston Mwenelupembe, insisted that the issue of commercialisation was already adopted at the previous annual general meeting.

For the fans, the issue is not just about the love for Bullets. It is about power and money.

It is estimated that Bullets have roughly four million supporters. On average, the team rakes in K10 million from each match in gate collections.

It is the fans who have a bigger say on such gate collections. Little wonder, the fans are determined to have their way.

The trustees want to commercialise the team but the supporters are suspicious fearing the team is being pushed into wrongs hands.

The first suspects are sponsors, Nyasa Manufacturing Company, whose officials have never hidden the fact that they want the team run professionally.

Opening the elections to all positions gives the fans the platform to handpick from the streets candidates for positions.

Once elected such officials, feeling indebted, will then play ball by appeasing the supporters with management of gate collections.

Bullets fans are entitled to 10 percent from gate collections. It is all greed.

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