By Duncan Mlanjira
While his hottest contestant, James Leonard Mwenda, for the post of Football Association of Malawi (FAM) presidency pledges that he shall make sure the senior Malawi national football team should qualify for the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations and that in 2031 they shall win the coveted for title, incumbent Walter Nyamilandu Manda, says he shall bring brand new systematic style of play and strong nursery youth teams.
This is what is in Nyamilandu’s manifesto that was launched on Thursday evening at Amaryllis Hotel in Blantyre as he seeks to be given another mandate as FAM ahead of the elective general assembly scheduled for Mangochi on December 14.
He talks of vibrant youth football development programs and structured grass root football being played across Malawi and stable administration without political upheaval or turmoil
“Our football has been administered in very robust and professional manner with due respect to its statutes. This has made it difficult for politics to creep in and derail our efforts,” says the world football governing body FIFA Council Member.
He talks of reputable and credible organisation of FAM running the game of rootball which has attracted high street corporates to partner with it; financial discipline, stability and increased revenue, consistently year in and year out and regained corporate trust and confidence from sponsors.
“We have retained most of the sponsors, with a few dropping along the way due to financial and market issues and not because of mis-trust or mismanagement.
“We have diversified business agenda of football into commercialization as a non-core activity. FAM now operates some busi- ness that are not core football related such as hospitality business in Chiwembe.
“We have aligned with the FIFA statutes in full and have created a gender sensitive and non-discriminatory football environment. FAM Statutes have a provision for a mandatory female seat on the FAM Executive Committee.”
“In line with FIFA requirements, we introduced Club Licensing which is in advanced stages leading to some clubs turning professional. This marks the beginning of a professionalization journey of the game.”
Through Nyamilandu, FAM has increased infrastructure with modern facilities and state of the art stadium that saw the construction of the 5,000-seater Mpira Stadium at Chiwembe that hosted the 2019 Under-17 COSAFA tournament.
FAM now has hghly educated staff managing the game on a day to day basis with coveted qualifications such as the FIFA Master.
Nyamilandu also says his vision is to transform women’s football into a national sport and a full time career where women and girls actively play organized football in competitive leagues through well-established clubs to become shining stars in Malawi and beyond the borders of the country.