…FIFA statutes do not permit tobacco sponsorships
The joy in the camp of probable Super League champions, Big Bullets Football Club, might be short-lived if the reports that Malawi24 has are anything to go by.
Late last night, Malawi24 broke the news that the peoples’ team has secured a K0.5 billion sponsorship from Nyasa Manufacturing Company which deals with tobacco.
According to the deal, it is expected that Nyasa will fund the team to a tune of K100 million per year for a contract of five years. This would make Bullets FC the highest earning team in the land, overtaking Mighty Wanderers which clinched a deal with a Japanese car dealer.
However, the sponsorship has come under fire over its violation of the FIFA regulations that bar tobacco companies from investing in football.
Information that Malawi24 has indicates that FIFA stops its affiliates from taking anything that has to do with tobacco, strong alcoholic drinks, sexism among other things. This places Bullets in the way of FIFA firing as it is taking money from a company that deals with cigarettes.
“It is illegal to do that and it might attract serious repercussions,” said a source at FAM who spoke on the condition that we do not reveal his details.
The source said that involving cigarette manufacturing companies directly contravenes the FIFA anti-smoking lobby and it is, therefore, not acceptable.
However, the source said Bullets will not be in the firing line of FIFA as it had cleared its way ahead.
“The only good thing about this deal is that we consulted FIFA and pleaded our case before the sealing of the deal, it is not as if we were unaware of the demands of FIFA. We talked to FIFA and they gave us a go ahead, so Bullets fans should not panic at the news,” said the source from FAM.
Malawi24 has been tipped that rival fans of Bullets are contemplating writing FIFA to alert them of the anomaly and have Bullets punished.