By Tonderai Mutambikwa
Harare, Zimbabwe. Barely a few days after Malawians strongly protested against the choice of some individuals who have been included in President Lazarus Chakwera’s government, the newly appointed Minister, Ulemu Msungama has demonstrated total ignorance about his duties as sports policy holder.
The newly appointed Minister (Msungama) told the media that he will find it difficult to work with the Football Association of Malawi, president, Walter Nyamilandu a development which has invited hot debate on various social media platforms.
Most people who are making contributions on the issue have already started calling on President Chakwera to withdraw the sports minister while some have advised for a quick orientation of minister in their roles and ettiquates as ministers in the provision of a policy guidelines.
One of the contributions on voice of Livingstonia Radio WhatsApp forum reads, “We all have political affiliations but the institutions we lead or work for push us to keep them within ourselves or at home before our wives and husbands all this is done considering different political idealogies we go for, Mr Nyamilandu could avoid that,”
But commenting on his Facebook page, one of Malawi’s renowned legal minds, David Kanyenda strongly warned against the interventionist approach espoused by the Honourable Minister which he said risks landing the country in hot soup with the world soccer governing body, FIFA.
“The state of the FIFA regulatory framework regarding the involvement of Government in football adminstration is well settled, FIFA respects the sovereignty of states and municipal law and deeply cherish and safeguard autonomy of national associations,
While FIFA operates a Private legal system in order to determine allegations, it is highly likely that complaints raised at the behest of political figures will be treated with suspicion and low regards,” Kanyenda said.
On the assertions of removing Nyamilandu or forcing him to resign as FAM president another contributor on Kanyenda’s Facebook wall only identified as Timothy Nundwe described them as illogical and lack merit.
“The Minister would be foolish to think that he can force Nyamilandu out of the Mpira House, that is foolishness,” Nundwe said.
Commenting on Voice of Livingstonia Radio, WhatsApp forum another MCP official Daudi Sulemani suggested the need to understand association football saying Governments don’t just wake up and arrest football officials if at all there are audits out there.
“Walter is the football president, Ulemu is the policy leader of sports and not FAM, he must stay in his Lane and coexist with FAM.
“What Ulemu is trying to do is not his job. He will drag government into mud. His petty fight with Walter must be contained, I see it fueled because of his lack of understanding of the sports space. Aphunzira. Koma he should learn his role and powers,” Sulemani said.
However, on the FAM president’s tenure of office the contributors agreed that the Minister cannot make any direction and that if there is any legitimate issue it can only be resolved through the football structures and Government has absolutely no role to play
Malawians vehemently rejected the composition of the current ministers whom they accused of being appointed basing on family lineage or creditors who funded Chakwera’s presidential bid, a development which forced Chakwera to defend the appointments in a state of nation address before they were sworn in.