The Football Association of Malawi (FAM) has moved in to help cushion clubs and players who have been hit hard financially after the effects of the Coronavirus put a halt to sporting activities in the country for the last one month.
FAM has set up a relief fund of close to 474,000 USD (350mn Malawian Kwacha) to support players and officials who will be due monthly stipends from June, to help them remain afloat and provide for their families at this difficult time.
Those to benefit from the Special fund are Super League club players and team officials, Women’s Football Regional League Teams and Elite Referees. The Association will also bail out its Member Associations by increasing the yearly subventions to member Associations that receive direct funding from FAM by 50 percent.
“FAM will offer monthly stipends to the above mentioned beneficiaries of not less than minimum wage as prescribed by Malawi Government. We will pay individual beneficiaries direct to their personal accounts between June and July,” said Nyamilandu during a media briefing.
He then disclosed that the decision to continue bailing out the clubs will depend on month to month assessment by a taskforce team that has been formed to assess the impact of COVID-19 on Malawi football.
The task force comprised FAM executive committee members, Chimango Munthali as chairman, Felister Dossi, Madalisto Kuyera and FAM General Secretary Alfred Gunda.
The FA boss also revealed that the Federation will increase the yearly subventions to member associations by 50 percent.
“Our Affiliates’ principle sources of revenues have been affected with the situation at hand and we resolved to release the funds earlier than planned. These funds will be available from June from the Operations Fund,” he added.
Meanwhile, Nyamilandu says FAM remains committed to ensure that the football season is finished, but depending on the timelines the war against the virus will extend to.
“However, bearing in mind that it is not yet known as to when football will resume, FAM has resolved that the season will only go ahead with some adjustments to the fixtures and allow the season to spill over to next year if the delay is within six months (April to September 2020).
“If the delay is of more than 6 months, that is October and beyond, the season will be considered to have been lost and FAM will start planning for another season which would start January 2021,” Nyamilandu said.
At the same time, FAM has offered its Technical Centre in Mzuzu to Malawi’s Health Ministry as a quarantine centre during the period of the pandemic as it plays its national role to help contain the spread of the virus.