Silver Strikers fan Japhet Majekete, who was the key figure in the organization of the recent Lilongwe High Four Soccer Bonanza has again courted controversy after he and the tournament’s organising committee failed to pay the four teams that took part in the two-day event.
Already, Majekete is struggling to settle a balance of about K2.5 million owed to Blue Eagles football club, who won the Fellowship Association of Malawi (Fama) Easter Soccer Bonanza held in Lilongwe a couple of years ago.
Recently, Majekete and a team of soccer followers from Lilongwe organised what was dubbed the Lilongwe High Four Soccer Bonanza but what looked like a an opportunity for the Lilongwe based teams to make some financial earnings ahead of the season has turned into a pipe dream as none of the four teams that took part has so far received money.
Champions Silver Strikers were supposed to get K1 million with Kamuzu Barracks, Civo and Epac expected to share some of the proceeds from gate takings.
However, only K2 million was realized from the gates and after paying for security, first aid, ground fee and other services, the organising committee remained with a balance of only K1 million, which it has been failing to distribute to the teams.
The committee’s suggestion to cut Silver’s prize money by half and share the remaining amount to the other three teams met fierce resistance from the bankers, who want their money in total.
Having failed to reach a consensus with the teams, the organising committee has reportedly approached Football Association of Malawi (Fam) and Super League of Malawi (Sulom) to help it reason with the clubs.
Officials from both Fam and Sulom have confirmed being approached by the organising committee, saying they have asked the committee to provide the contract or agreement that was signed with the clubs.
However, a member of the organising committee, speaking on condition of anonymity has told Nyasa Times that there was only a verbal agreement with the clubs that the winner would get K1 million with the other participating teams receiving shares from gate collections.
“There is no contract or agreement in place but as individual committee members, we are blaming Mr Majekete for not listening to our advice to postpone the tournament and look for a sponsor then sensitise fans,” said the member.