Gate revenue task force completes assignment

The task force on gate revenue fraud has finalised consultations with football stakeholders and has come up with proposals on how to eliminate the vice.

The task force’s chairperson Richard Nyirongo said after meeting media representatives in Dedza on Sunday that they will present the proposals to the Malawi National Council of Sports board tomorrow.

Nyirongo (L) interacts with Nyirenda (C) and Sports Council acting-executive secretary Shephord Boma after the meeting

Sports Council appointed the 10-member task force to investigate gate fraud and come up with a comprehensive strategy and framework for arresting the vice following incidents of gate revenue fraud and theft during football matches at various stadiums.

Apart from consulting the media, the task force also sought views from other football stakeholders such as Football Association of Malawi (FAM), clubs and fans.

“The consultations have gone on well and we are ready to present our proposals to the board,” Nyirongo said.

The proposals include an Act of Parliament that can help to mete out stiffer punishment to gate revenue fraudsters as a deterrent, considering that most offenders only get suspended sentences and fines or get released after being arrested.

The other proposal is for the government and stakeholders to fast-track the introduction of e-ticketing at match venues.

Sports Council Board chairperson Sunduzwayo Madise yesterday said they will look at the recommendations and map the way forward.

However, he said the proposals will not be the only solutions to end gate fraud.

“This is just the start of the process of coming up with measures that can deal with gate revenue fraud. Now, at least, we know where to start from in our fight against this vice,” Madise said.

Soccer analyst Charles Nyirenda, who was among those that were consulted, said Sports Council took the right direction to consult stakeholders.

Of late, gate revenue fraud cases have been on the rise with clubs complaining that their shares at crowd-pulling matches do not tally with the patronage.

In June this year, six gate cashiers were convicted and fined by the Blantyre Magistrate’s Court after stealing K440 000 during a TNM Super League match between Mighty Mukuru Wanderers and Sable Farming at Kamuzu Stadium on April 16.

In another incident, Nyasa Big Bullets suspended their former accountant Jeremiah Mwagomba after he was implicated in an attempted gate fraud scheme at Kamuzu Stadium when Bullets played Waka Waka Tigers.

Nyasa Big Bullets chief administration officer Albert Chigoga said the consultations were important for key stakeholders to share ideas and experiences, to  curb of gate fraud.

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