Japanese second-hand car dealers, Be Forward Company Limited, has attached strings to its unprecedented K70 million (about $150 000) sponsorship of Mighty Wanderers, the tightest being four Nomads officials signing a liability statement.
The statement entails that in the event of the sponsorship being abused, the officials, who include club general secretary Mike Butao, chairperson George Chamangwana and two unnamed trustees, will reimburse the money—even if they would not personally be at fault.
Butao confirmed that there are a number of control measures that have been tied to the sponsorship to ensure accountability and transparency.
It is believed that the sponsorship will be launched soon.
“There are a lot of measures that have been incorporated into the contract to check abuse. I am not at liberty to mention these now, but I can tell you that the GS, the chairperson and two trustees have signed a statement of liability. This means any abuse of funds will be personally reimbursed by these four people from their own pockets,” Butao explained.
Speaking when he unveiled the sponsorship last Friday, Chamangwana said if the Nomads pass the litmus test in prudent financial management, good performance on and off the pitch, the one-year sponsorship unveiled last Friday could be extended to a longer period ranging from five to 10 years.
After the acquisition of this sponsorship, Nomads now want to buy a piece of land and develop a training ground which could evolve into a stadium. The club will also intensify its SMS campaign as they, in the long run, eye a return to international club competitions, Butao hinted.
He said they would seek advice from stakeholders, including Sulom, to maintain the sponsorship as “it would not make sense to secure such lucrative sponsorship and then lose it just because we were too proud to seek advice.”
Silver Strikers have, through general secretary Mike Tembo, congratulated Wanderers while also advising them to safeguard the sponsorship by engaging “the services of a qualified account, who can pull the club’s reports on expenditures at a touch of one button, this will ease your pressure on explaining the clubs expenditures as you are all busy people.”
James Chuma, one of Wanderers’ trustees, could on Monday not confirm if he is among the signatories, but referred The Nation to Patrick Jumbe who is spokesperson of the trustees. Jumbe was not readily available as we went to press.
Wanderers are now the best sponsored elite football club locally. Sulom president Innocent Bottoman has since advised all clubs, including Wanderers, to safeguard sponsorship through discipline, transparency and sound performance. Nomads chief supporter Dennis Chitsulo has since promised to ensure supporters’ discipline.