Malawi President Joyce Banda has offered Big Bullets FC and their arch-rivals Mighty Wanderers a lifeline by offering to help the two clubs on the commercialisation drive.
The President underlined the commitment on Monday evening at Sanjika Palace in Blantyre when she hosted the two clubs at the top hill palace donating K25 million each.
She also promised to help both teams in fundraising activities. Wanderers and Bullets have largest following in the top-flight league but do not have sponsorshi.
“I am ready to support the two teams to fundraise not next month but now. I will give K25 million to each team so that for a month or two you can survive,” said President Banda whose husband, Chief Justice retired Richard Banda is a retired football star.
The President said she was willing to help sports because of the legacy that her family has in sports.
“I happen to be wife to one of Malawi’s popular footballers, Shoe Shine who is also father to Ian Banda one of Malawi’s celebrated players of the national team in the 80s,” she said.
“He [First Gentleman] is also a former chairman of Football Association of Malawi and Malawi Olympic Committee. So I thought that people in sports would have taken advantage of that to engage me before now for fundraising activities.”
She said Malawi could regain its lost glory in football if the teams and associations are well funded.
The President cited the glorious days of the 70s and 80s when Malawi was a force to reckon by beating big teams such as Cameroon and Egypt.
“I know the success of teams depends on the leadership which was well funded. With no funding there’s nothing they can do.”
However, the President emphasised on the need for both teams to guard against acts of violence for her to continue with the noble cause.
“What worries me is the violence. In our family we co-existed although we supported different teams. We didn’t fight each and we didn’t kill each other.”
Minister of Information Brown Mpinganjira, who initiated the meeting, applauded the President for the donation and commitment to lead the team in the commercialisation drive for both teams.
“On behalf of the two teams I would like to sincerely thank you the President for the commitment you have made to fundraise for the club.
“Thank you for the generous offer.”
Bullets chairman Kondie Msungama said the donation would go a long way to support the club.
“We are very grateful to the President for her contribution to sports development. Our prayers have been answered because our coffers were dry,” Msungama said.
“It’s like the heavy financial burden has been taken off our head.”
His Wanderers counterpart George Chamangwana said the donation has brought back smiles on the faces of team’s fans.
“I am the happiest man and I know so do Wanderers fans for what the president has done for us,” Chamangwana said.
FAM President Walter Nyamilandu, General Secretary Suzgo Nyirenda Super of Malawi, General Secretary Williams Banda, Treasurer Tiya Somba Banda, Bullets executive and supporters committee officials, Wanderers executive and supporters committee officials players from both camps were among those who graced the event.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :