Yabwanya; don’t be like a proverbial lizard that jumped from high iroko tree


Football Association of Malawi (Fam) elections destined for December 12 in Mangochi are taking twist and turns. Last weekend, Fam Electoral Committee screened and rejected some aspirants.

Canada- based Willy Yabwanya Phiri has been stopped from contesting because he failed to fulfill a legal requirement as stipulated in Article 34 Sub Section 2 of the Fam Constitution which demands him to be resident within the territory of Fam.

Yabwanya was disqualified because he was not a resident within the territory of Fam when nominations were taking place and during the verification exercise.


This week, newspapers have been awash with Yabwana’s tantrums, cursing the Fam committee’s decision and questioning the endorsement of Wilkins Mijiga to contest in the race.

Yabwanya claims that Mijiga has not been active in association football for a period of not less than five years and he was ineligible to stand.

In all fairness, attacking a fellow contestant in the media instead of laying your grounds of appeal speaks volumes of his style of leadership.


This is not the first time we have heard such tantrums from Yabwanya. A few weeks ago, he said he had done a lot to Malawi football than both the incumbent President Walter Nyamilandu and Mijiga combined.

Such statements smack of disrespect for others. Sponsoring three football teams in Karonga, which none of them plays in the top-flight league, does not mean Yabwanya has developed Malawi football or it’s a qualification to become Fam president.

Much as we questioned Mijiga’s credentials in football administration, but we know that he was part of the football family when he organised fundraising activities for the national soccer team at Mpira House a couple of years ago. Yabwanya was nowhere to be seen when we were in those problems.

The Canada-based man should have been around 12 years ago when Walter, at 32 years, was bailing out Fam from the jaws of quacks and upstarts.

Now, Yabwanya has an interest to contest because the association has been developed beyond recognition with scores of referees, administrators and coaches being trained and imposing infrastructures being constructed.

Fam can now employ graduates and it commands respect from the corporate world, no wonder they have wooed Carlsberg and Airtel sponsorship.

And for someone to undermine what Walter and his executive have done to Malawi football for the past decade is ridiculous and unheard of.

Be serious Yabwanya, give credit where it is due. The soccer fraternity knows who has done what in Malawi football. No one can fool us.

Don’t be like the proverbial lizard that jumped from a high iroko tree and said it would praise itself if no one else did.

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