After it was feared that government was duped by the much touted sponsorship of the Netball Assiciation of Malawi (NAM) by a UK based Rach Family Trust, authorities have summoned the sponsor’s chairperson Ravi Rach to explain the failure to honour contractual obligations to fund Malawi national netball team assignments.
NAM reportedly complained to Ministry of Labour, Youth, Sports and Manpower Development that out of the initial K120 million which was supposed to be paid in the first year of the K600 million five-year deal, the team has only been given K15 million as earlier revealed by Nyasa Times.
The netball Association is an affiliate of the Malawi National Council of Sports (MNCS) which is a government arm which also witnessed the signing of a K600 million five year pact last year.
Analysts had earlier raised questions as to the main motive of the sponsorship with some suspecting that Rachel just wanted to use the Malawi Queens as a means to fufill sinister motives including business deals in Malawi.
The Malawi government, through the Ministry of Sports officials, admits to have not done any due diligence cbefore it signed the agreement with Mr Rach who is also said to be involved in a court case in which he is suspected of having been involved in fraudulent activities.
NAM president Khungekile Matiya confirmed they have raised the matter with MNCS, saying whenever they ask the sponsor about the funding , it is not being given and its affecting them since they are forced to spend the government allocation on national team programmes instead of supporting other netball activities.
Matiya also complained that there is “no progress” on the construction of a netball court.
Nyasa Times understands Rachi met President Peter Mutharika and promised him the construction work of the Netball court was commencing in earnest after the Malawi leader influenced events for him to have land. But as it turned out, a Mutharika was duped.
Minister of Labour, Youth, Sports and Manpower Development Francis Kasaila has said it is “unfortunate” the much touted sponsorship is not working as anticipated.
He said a decision has to be made ” on whether to continue or cancel the contract so that NAM can look at other avenues.”
According to the contract which both parties signed, NAM was obliged to allow RFT use netball as “a market vehicle for their products without prejudice of the players and the sport”.
“NAM shall ensure proper coordination of this and other related projects,” reads the contract in part.
The association was also tasked to ensure that the Queens’ uniforms are branded “RFT for all local and international games where RTF is the main sponsor.”
The contract states that any side can terminate the contract if it feels that the other party is breaching its obligations.
It reads: “Notwithstanding anything contained in this agreement either party may terminate the agreement if the other party is in breach of any of the obligations….”
According to the contract, RTF would, among others, sponsor the national netball league, provide the national team with kits and organise refresher courses for coaches, umpires and administratorsFollow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :