FIFA President Gianni Infantino has cancelled his trip to Malawi after FIFA Aviation ruled that his plane could not safely land at Chileka Airport.
The FIFA president was expected to arrive in the country today to launch the Mpira Stadium in Blantyre.
In a statement this morning, General Secretary Alfred Gunda said the ongoing rehabilitation works on the Chileka International Airport main runway which makes it not possible for the Presidential Jet carrying the FIFA President and his entourage to land.
“After carrying out a full assessment of the secondary runway, FIFA Aviation at the last minute ruled that they couldn’t take a chance to land at Chileka Airport for safety reasons,” said Gunda.
He added that the plane could have landed at Kamuzu International Airport in Lilongwe but it would have been difficult for the delegation to use other means of transport to travel to Blantyre due to the tight schedule of the FIFA president.
Infantino was expected to arrive in the country at 2pm and leave at 7pm for the Democratic Republic of Congo.
According to Gunda, FAM is now collaborating with FIFA on rescheduling the visit to an earliest convenient date.
“FAM is sincerely grateful for the confidence that FIFA has shown in earmarking Malawi as one of the destinations for their next tour of Africa. We remain hopeful that this will materialize having received the assurance from FIFA,” he said.
Infantino was expected to arrive in Malawi together with four-time African footballer of the year Samuel Eto’o, CAF President Ahmad and FIFA General Secretary Fatma Samoura.