BeForward Wanderers Football Club has apologised to the Seventh Day Adventist Church in Malawi following the use of the Dorcas Uniform by one of their supporters at a Kamuzu Stadium re-opening match in Blantyre on Saturday.
The apology comes barely hours after Director of Women Ministries in the SDA Church Emily Banda Nangozo expressed disappointed with the act.
Said Emily Banda: “I would like to register our serious disappointment and anger over this picture of a male Be forward supporter who wore the full Dorcas uniform to a Football match yesterday. I find it disturbing to see a man dress in a woman’s clothes….is this a demonstration of something we are failing to understand? I find it disturbing for a man to use a well known church uniform to a football match. I find it disturbing that this was used on a Sabbath day.
“Our thinking was that a football game is a national game that attracts people of all religions, sex, race and tribe and therefore think it would be only prudent if we respected each other. As SDA women, we feel this young man has insulted our dignity, has demeaned our faith and has generally insulted the SDA church in Malawi.
“I do not understand the motive behind such an action but I must say we will not condone this. Its totally unacceptable and uncalled for. Our thought and prayers are with this young man for the holy spirit to talk to him in a VERY special way.
I pray that FAM, SULOM and Be forward wanderers find it necessary to address this concern which has caused so much pain to the Dorcas women in Malawi.”
And in apparent response to Banda’s reaction, Mike Butao, the football club’s General Secretary said the team had noted the from the SDA Church and has since assured the church the matter will be addressed once and for all.
“We wish to assure the SDA Church and all other churches in Malawi that the Wanderers family is an all-embracing family and we have supporters from all faith groupings. We would never ever encourage or tolerate any act or behaviour that puts us in conflict with any faith or religion or indeed any grouping of any sort. We have the best behaved supporters in the country and we have already communicated to all supporters committees across the country to desist from and/or be on the lookout for anything that would be deemed offensive to individuals, organizations, faith groups, political parties or any other grouping.
“So even though we can not control what happens in the stands, we can at least dissociate the club from any negative issues happening there that have not been sanctioned by the club.
“So we apologize to the SDA church for this particular incident. We believe it was religiously insensitive and we believe the young man concerned has noted and regrets his mistake,” said Butao.