SULOM Turns Down 75 Percent Increment Proposal From Referees
The Super League of Malawi-SULOM has turned down a 75 percent increment proposal from elite referees, who officiate in the top flight TNM Super League, citing the current unfavorable economic situation.
Meanwhile, analysts fear SULOM’s refusal to increase the referees’ perks could propel corrupt practices in which they have been alleged to have been involved in.
A senior official, who represented the referees at a pre-season meeting with SULOM, has told Zodiak there is growing dismay amongst the referees who expected their perks hiked in the wake of hardships to earn a decent living.
Central Region Referees Committee chairperson, Duncan Lengani, one of the referees’ seniors, who attended an interface and preview meeting with a SULOM delegation in Lilongwe, has told Zodiak online the referees are not amused with the league administrators’ decision to refuse the 75 percent increment proposal, and are still pressing their authorities to negotiate for a better deal as the local whistle men remain the least paid in the SADC region.
Zodiak can reveal that last year, an elite referee and his two assistants, were receiving 20,000 Kwacha per game and wanted their perks adjusted to 50,000 Kwacha to which SULOM has said no.
Instead, SULOM says it will afford a 25 percent increment, meaning the new perks for the referees is 21, 000 Kwacha per game.
But Lengani says the money is still on the lower side.
“We are not getting enough money and that is a concern. In one way or the other this affects our performance in the field.”
Meanwhile, George Chiusiwa, a local soccer analyst, fears SULOM’s refusal to adjust the referees’ perks, could propel further corrupt practices amongst the whistle men.
“We’ve been hearing a lot of stories about these referees that they are being bribed to influence the outcome of the games and you tend to wonder what the authorities are doing about it.
“The refusal by SULOM is likely to fuel those malpractice even further because it be will be easy to bribe them.
“SULOM needs to take this issue very serious because our referees play a bigger role and they need to be getting enough perks, that way they will not be able to be influenced.”
Efforts to speak to SULOM’s authorities proved futile.