Four of five of Malawi’s representatives at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games have returned home after putting up a spirited performance despite not getting nowhere near winning medals.
Long distance runner Tereza Master, who made a national record in the marathon, two swimmers Brave Lifa and Amara Pinto and David Areneo of archery, returned home Wednesday with a few days before the official closing ceremony.
The athletes, who participated on solidarity after failing to qualify, were accompanied by swimming coach Yona Walesi and archery coach Ping Kong as the Games which run from August 5 draws to an end on August 21.
But Kefas Kasten Chatsala, was left behind with coach Francis Munthali and team manager Naomi Chinatu with a few days before the games.
Swimmer Lifa said this was what the Malawi officials had arranged.
“When we were leaving for the games our officials had made this arrangement that we will leave earlier,” Lifa said.
“I have also noticed that athletes who had competed earlier have also returned home.”
The arrangement has been made by the Rio Olympic Games Organising Committee (Rogoc) with International Olympic Committee (IOC) to cut on expenses but rather as a precautionary measure over the risk of zika virus.
Zika virus, which is spread through mosquitoes and pose a risk for children to be born with undeveloped brain, threatened the Games as Brazil was hard hit.
In the previous Games the International Olympic Committee (IOC) urged all the Olympic athletes, coaches and officials from their participating countries to take part in the closing ceremony which is normally as explosive as the opening ceremony.