SRFL demands Mutharika League prize money before Malawi polls

Southern Region Football League (SRFL) are demanding Peter Mutharika, the Democratic Progressive Party’s presidential candidate  to honour the league prizes before the Tripartite May 20 Elections.

SRFL General Secretary George Mpagaja, Northern and Central regions’ women football leagues fear it will be difficult to get their prizes after the polls if Mutharika fails to be elected.

Mutharika sponsors the leagues to the tune of K5 million (US$12 107) each.

Peter Mutharika: League demands prizes before May 20
Peter Mutharika: League demands prizes before May 20

Mpagaja said teams were concerned that two months after the league finished, Mutharika, was playing a hide and seek game over the payment of the prizes effectively making champions Chikhwawa United joining the elite TNM Super League without receiving their K1 million prize money.

Mutharika’s position was questioned after his Personal Assistant Ben Phiri said they were not aware that the league finished claiming that they were not informed.

But SFRL wrote Mutharika just after the season finished informing him that the league was over and he should hold the prize presentation ceremony.

The SRFL’s sponsorship was twice threatened after the death of his brother former Malawi president Bingu wa Mutharika in 2012.

Mutharika and his handlers are not new to controversy after reducing the women’s football league sponsorship from K3 million to K1.3 million in the second year arguing that there was misunderstanding  of the deal.

The presidential candidate also failed to honour the initial three year contract for women’s league after his brother former Malawi president Bingu Wa Mutharika died in office in 2012.

He completely withdrew sponsorship with a year remaining on the contract.

Mutharika’s aide said the prizes will be given but not under duress before elections.

He wondered why the sponsorship is being linked to the outcome of the elections, saying Mutharika started sponsoring football when he was not even a presidential candidate and he was able to honour his obligation.

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