Airtel discussing with FAM on sponsorship extension


Airtel Malawi says discussions with relevant authorities are underway to map the way forward on extension of sponsorship contract for Airtel ‘Zamadolo’ Top 8 tournament.

This is according Airtel Malawi Managing Director Charles Kamoto who was speaking on Tuesday February 27, 2024 at Mount Soche Hotel in Blantyre during the awards presentation ceremony to top performers for the sixth edition of Airtel Top 8 competition.

Kamoto said following the expiring of a three-year contract, the company is currently in discussions with the Football Association of Malawi (FAM) on the future of the competition and says the public will be updated once a final decision is made by the parties involved in the discussions, but he hinted at a favourable outcome though he did not commit.

The public will be updated once a final decision is made- Kamoto.

“We have concluded and concluded in style with the current winners, the media and everybody who was meant to win in this tournament. We are excited about that. Now we are in conversation time with Football Association of Malawi to see how we move forward in the next season,” said Kamoto.

The Airtel Malawi Managing Director was also quick to highlight some of the successes the competition has brought which he said include the lifting up of the standard of play of football in the country evidenced by Malawi national team’s qualification into the African Cup of Nations tournament.

Apart from that, Kamoto said his company is also happy that it has also achieved another objective of entertaining Malawians with excellent football management to a point that teams have been pulling up their socks in other competitions so that they should play in Airtel Top 8 tournament.

However, he condemned the ugly scenes which marred the 2023 Airtel Top 8 season, especially in the opening match in which a match between Mighty Mukuru Wanderers and Silver Strikers ended prematurely at Bingu National Stadium in Lilongwe.

“We did not like that situation. We expressed our dissatisfaction to the Football Association of Malawi that these issues need to be managed. We want to have smooth tournaments. We want to have a tournament where people want to go to the stadium without thinking something wrong will happen at the stadium.

“Just like we watch matches outside the country, we want the stadiums to be packed. These kinds of events should not be tolerated and we need to be strict about how to govern this so that the game of football can be pushed much to better levels,” he added.

On his part, FAM president Fleetwood Haiya, while expressing optimism that Airtel will extend the sponsorship contract, warned officiating personnels, teams and supporters that his administration will not tolerate behaviours that will bring the game of football into disrepute.

Football Association of Malawi (FAM) president Fleetwood Haiya
FAM President Fleetwood Haiya.

“I have to keep short of a warning here to say that in the editions which are going to come and I believe that they are going to come, we are not going to tolerate the referees or the supporters or the officials that are going to take this game to disrepute or indeed make any insinuation of the games or anything that can put indeed the game into a disrepute whereby we can chase away the sponsors not only to the teams but also to the Cup.

“So this season we are late, we are just waiting for Airtel to announce the dates where they want us to have their invasions. and we are very eager for that. We have already put measures in control to make sure that the editions which are coming, everything is in order.

We are talking of the new committee that is going to put in place for security and safety that is going to make sure that there is no virus at the games and not only that, we are also reviewing our rules and regulations to make sure that the forthcoming editions is run smoothly and competitive,” explained Haiya.

He then thanked Airtel for the understanding and patience that they allowed the cup to finish and also the Wanderers and Silver leadership for accepting that football should win claiming the two teams had the powers to drag the body to FIFA.