Wanderers fear for future as debts rise to K79 million
Troubled Be Forward Wanderers have painted a bleak picture about their future as they continue to struggle with debts.
Wanderers are currently grappling with a K79 million debt that has swollen from K60 million in 2018.
Part of the debt comes from expenses incurred during the Nomads’ participation in the Caf Champions League where they did not enjoy their sponsor Be Forward’s financial support.
In a desperate bid to make their participation a reality, the Lali Lubani Road side went out with a begging bowl to help raise resources for their trip to Kinshasa for a match against Democratic Republic of Congo’s Vita Club.
They almost pocketed a donation of about K20 million from an unnamed opposition politician but later changed their mind after reportedly being warned against accepting such offers.
Reports making rounds at the time were that an insider had advised Wanderers that the government would come to their rescue if they turned down the opposition politician.
Wanderers General Secretary, Victor Maunde, said creditors were continuously on their neck and warned that the club would close shop if there was no one to bail it out.
“We are pleading with the State President [Peter Mutharika] to help us otherwise we will close shop as a club. This is the realistic picture that I can paint for now. Expect our operations to grind to a halt if nothing is done to save the situation.
“Creditors are all over demanding their dues but we have nothing to give them. That is why we are asking the president to do something so that the club continues with its operations,” Maunde said.
He said they have always believed that the government was better positioned to help them survive the tough times.
“We have all the hope that the government would assist us. On reports that we declined to receive some donations in the past, allow me not to comment. I am a newcomer in Wanderers’ executive committee. I was not in mainstream football administration in 2018 when the team joined the Caf competition,” Maunde said.
Wanderers may heave a sigh of relief after Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture announced that Mutharika will launch the construction of their stadium alongside Nyasa Big Bullets’ tomorrow in Blantyre.
Last week, former Wanderers General Secretary Mike Butao told The Daily Times that the team’s financial crisis had worsened and that sponsors had called for an executive committee meeting which failed to take place on Tuesday.
“The meeting failed to take place because I was attending a funeral and we will advise when we have set another date,” Butao said.
Mutharika will first unveil plaques at the construction sites of the two projects before presiding over a launching ceremony at Nyambadwe Primary School ground.
The projects’ total estimated cost is K7.5 billion and completion is expected in 104 weeks.
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.