Africa-Press – Malawi. The 2020/21 TNM Super League season has been suspended until February at the earliest due to the new gazzeted rules which have restricted any public gathering to just 50 people.
On Sunday, State President Lazarus Chakwera ordered the Health Ministry to Gazette new Covid-19 preventative rules, which among other things, restricted any public gathering to just 50 people from the initial 100 people which was announced by the Presidential Taskforce on Covid-19 committee a fortnight ago.
The development has forced Super League of Malawi (Sulom) to suspend the league for three weeks in order to observe the newly gazzeted laws announced by the Taskforce on Monday.
The statement reads: “Super League of Malawi (Sulom) would like to announce that the TNM Super League will go on a three week recess in order to observe the newly gazzeted Covid-19 prevention laws announced by Presidential Task Force on Covid-19.”
“This follows the clarification by the Presidential Taskforce on Covid-19 that the restrictions of public gathering to 50 people included athletes,” reads part of the statement.
The body further clarified that with the new FIFA five substitute rule, it is almost very difficult for the games to continue as teams will have more players for match days.
“With the new FIFA five substitute rule, players are already 20 per team (40) plus seven technical officers (14) thus the total number of teams on the pitch is already at 54. This excludes match officials, the media, paramedics, stewards and Police.
With the new laws in place, it is therefore, impossible to have a match played under minimum requirements as stipulated by world football governing body FIFA.”
“Sulom will fully safe and observe all the Covid-19 precautionary measures,” reads the statement.
The development means teams will have to wait a bit longer for them to return to the field of play.
Reacting to the news, Nyasa Big Bullets Chief Administrative Officer Albert Chigoga said the new regulations made it very difficult for the games to continue.
“It’s a situation that we understand. The new wave has hit the nation very hard and the new regulations that have been gazzeted into law that 50 people should gather at one place. Under these circumstances, its understandable that football should be called off until further notice. We will wait, we will continue preparing until we are told to resume the games,” he said.
For the past weeks, games in the elite league were played behind the closed doors.
As of Tuesday, Malawi has registered 13027 Covid-19 cases with 321 fatalities from which 6080 people have recovered.