The Malawi Supreme Court of Appeal has overturned the High Court ruling that awarded former national football team coach Ernest Mtawali damages for defamation.
High Court Judge Joseph Chigona in November 2017 ruled in favour of Mtawali after he claimed general and special damages over broadcast and published articles, in which Football Association of Malawi (FAM) and its the then vice-president James Mwenda, as FAM technical sub-committee chairperson, reportedly alleged that Mtawali was fired due to “lack of planning and managerial skills and, to some extent, discipline”.
But FAM appealed against the ruling, arguing that the High Court judge erred in law; hence, the need for the Supreme Court to reverse the verdict and order that costs at the Supreme Court and the High Court should go in favour of the appellants (FAM and Mwenda).
In its 44-page determination, the Supreme Court of Appeal judges on Tuesday said there is “considerable uncertainty” as what Mwenda said to the media was defamatory at all.
The court also observed that there was not enough evidence that Mwenda said the alleged defamatory statements quoted in the press.
Mtawali’s one-year contract expired in July 2016 and FAM did not extend his contract following poor results. Mtawali, one of the great football talents in the country and revered legend, registered four wins, a draw and three losses as national team coach.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :