Malawi TNM League
Bullets and Wanderers in action last season

BLANTYRE-(MaraviPost)—Super League of Malawi (Sulom) has set May 2017 for the kick off of the flagship league.

Sulom president Innocent Bottoman confirmed of the development in an interview with The Nation Newspaper has said the flagship league will kick off next month.

Initially, the domestic top-flight league was scheduled to start next weekend, but was suspended indefinitely due to the move by TNM to withdraw its sponsorship about a fortnight ago.

“I will not comment much on the issue of sponsorship, suffice to say there are some logistics that we are working on behind the scenes and I have all the hope that everything will be in order by May.

“As at now, nothing has changed, the kick off is still suspended as communicated by the GS [general secretary], but by May we should kick off. There should be no cause for alarm at this point,” said Bottoman as quoted in the newspaper.

Recently Football Association of Malawi (FAM) president Walter Nyamilandu also said he is optimistic that the situation will be addressed soon.

“I will not say much, but we will see to it that the Super league should have a sponsor this coming season,” he said.

Sulom officials recently met Minister of Labour, Youth, Sports and Manpower Development Henry Mussa in Blantyre where he wanted to understand the circumstances leading to the sponsorship withdrawal before meeting TNM management.

Telekom Networks Malawi withdrew its sponsorship towards the country’s super league after the ruling by Competitions and Fair Trading Commission (CFTC) over the contract which the company had with Super League of Malawi.

CFTC ruled that TNM should not hold exclusive rights to the league thereby allowing other companies and individuals to come in.

According to the ruling the TNM would have been required to drop the clauses in the contract which stops Super League of Malawi (Sulom) and clubs from entering agreements with other mobile service providers.

Douglas Stevenson, Chief Executive Officer in  letter to Sulom said “As a business, TNM distinguishes between corporate social investment and commercial sponsorship. In a sponsorship, as per normal global practice, exclusivity is critical factor in the creation of a commercial value for any sponsor”

The delay to kick off the flagship league as well as national team engagements have also led to FAM rescheduling the Chifundo Charity Shield which was initially slated for tomorrow.

Presidential Cup champions Nyasa Big Bullets, who are also the Charity Shield defending champions, and Super League champions Kamuzu Barracks were expected to meet at Bingu National Stadium in Lilongwe.

FAM general secretary Alfred Gunda said the Charity Shield marks the beginning of the season; hence, it cannot be played while the Super League kick off is uncertain.

 

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