Ministry of Labour, Youth, Sports and Manpower Development has asked Treasury to allow Bingu National Stadium (BNS) management to be using part of the gate takings share for its operations.
The minister responsible, Francis Kasaila, confirmed the development in the wake of financial challenges facing the multi-billion kwacha sports facility which has seen it struggling to pay bills.
Recently, Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi (Escom) disconnected the facility for an outstanding bill of over K22 million.
BNS, which hosts high-profile sports games and other activities, deposits the proceeds like its share of football gate collections and booking fees to government’s main account number one.
Treasury gives BNS around K3 million every month for its operations which, according to management, is not enough to meet water and electricity bills which total over K8 million every month.
Meanwhile, Kasaila admitted that the funding towards the stadium is not enough.
He said the ministry has since approached Treasury to consider allowing BNS management to be saving part of the money it generates.
“We have asked our colleagues in finance to give us more resources or allow us, in the interim, keep some of the resources that we generate from the stadium. If we are allowed to keep some money, then we should be able to pay some of our bills,” he said.
Kasaila also said his ministry has asked Escom to stop billing them as a commercial entity; a system he argued has led to the stadium incurring huge electricity bills.
“This stadium is not entirely a commercial entity as Escom has categorised it. We want it to be billed as an ordinary institution because the stadium’s purpose is to serve the public and not run wholly as a company,” he said.
Commenting on the proposal, Treasury spokesperson Davis Sado said they are in receipt of the proposal, saying: “We are doing an assessment and we will advise them accordingly on how best they can manage the stadium. We will invite them for a meeting and discuss in detail the arrangements we have with other departments and then map the way forward.” n