British High Commission in Lilongwe and the Malawi Defence Force (MDF) have joined forces in an initiative to raise K10 million towards helping world war veterans and ex-service men.
British High Commissioner to Malawi Holly Tett says there is a need to properly look after brave and dedicated soldiers from Nyasaland who fought alongside the allies in both world wars.
“Over 15 000 men participated in the East African campaigns for the Kings African Rifles during the First World War. Some were killed, some went missing, others wounded or safely returned,” Tett said during a news conference in Lilongwe on Monday.
She added that their actions still shape the world we are living now and the freedom we the world is currently enjoying.
Some of the activities lined up for the fundraising initiative include football, netball and golf tournaments.
Convener for the Fundraising Tournaments Brigadier General Dan Kuwali said they are hopeful that companies and individuals will come forward to support the noble cause by sponsoring teams and providing prizes for the charity tournaments.
“We conducted a needs-assessment to ascertain what these brave men need most. It is unfortunate to note that some of these selfless souls are living a not-so-comfortable life. Through this initiative we believe we can help them,” said Kuwali.
The football and netball tournaments will take place on Saturday, 4th of November at Silver Stadium in Lilongwe while the golf tournament is scheduled for the 11th of November at Lilongwe Golf club where Vice President Dr. Saulos Chilima will be in attendance.
The fundraising activity coincides with the Remembrance Month of November in which Kings African Rifles (KAR) veterans who fought in World I and II and ex-service members of the MDF who were injured in active service are remembered and honoured.
In a related development, Deputy Minister of Defence Everton Chimulilenji announced on Monday that the Commonwealth Ex-service League of Malawi (CELOM) has changed its name to the Veterans and Ex-service Members League of Malawi (VELOM).
The change aims at expanding membership of the organisation through inclusion of retirees from MDF since CELOM only catered for those veterans who fought in the two World Wars.
“We only have 19 War Veterans at the Memorial Homes at the moment and thousands of service members in the villages. We feel our men in both categories deserve recognition and our help,” said Chimulilenji.
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