Malawi’s Pro-golfers association signs MoU with Ministry of Tourism

Professional Golfers Association of Malawi (PGAMW) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Wildlife on the hosting of the next Warm Heart Pros Tour.

The signing process
Group photograph after signing the MOU
General Odillo, Rtd and his vice-president Patridge Shycal proudly display the MOU

Speaking at the signing ceremony on Sunday at Lilongwe Golf Club that was graced by the Minister himself, Michael Usi, PGAMW president Henry Odillo, said this partnership is an opportunity of helping in the promotion of tourism, which is one of the key priority areas in the Malawi’s Growth and Development Strategy III.

“The MOU is a demonstration of the change we all want to see; the change that leaves no one — not even the prestigious sport of golf behind — in the sustainable development of our mother Malawi,” Odillo said.

“We should all take cognizance of COVID-19 and how it impacted the sport of golf.  Restrictions imposed on social gathering, affected our good game the same way it affected other sporting activities.

“The reality of this deadly and fast spreading COVID-19 epidemic cannot be questioned but against all odds, the government of Malawi — through the Ministry of Tourism, Culture & Wildlife and indeed the line Ministry of Sports — opened the sporting space which will allows us to prepare fully for all other events in the year to come.

“That include the Warm Heart Pro Tour whose contract we are celebrating today.”

Odillo applauded Usi for opening the door of his office for the PGAMW throughout their engagement process.

This will be the second year PGAMW will host the Warm Heart Pro Tour. The inaugural Tour attracted 70 professional players and golf administrators from 8 countries — Zambia, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Eswatini, Namibia, Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda and Portugal.

“Let me mention that this was possible with financial and moral support from various partners, especially from the corporate world such as TNM Malawi, FDH Bank, Toyota Malawi, Airtel Malawi, Umodzi Park, most of whom are here present tonight to witness this event.

“It is through this event that PGAMW drew some lessons of the potential the sport of golf has in promoting tourism and moving forward — in the third quarter of 2020 — PGAMW decided to take a step further and engaged with the Ministry of Tourism.

“It is, however, worth noting and acknowledging the speed at which the Ministry acted on the matter, and I should observe that in less than 3 months we are here with a done deal — thanks to you, Honourable Minister and your team.”

He assured the Minister and the corporate guests present that golf, through Warm Heart Pro Tour, will adequately be the platform through which tourism will meaningfully be promoted in Malawi.

Odillo thus appealed to the corporate world to take this opportunity and support this Tour while gaining visibility of their respective brands.

“The time is now to send the message to the world that Malawi is a safer and better destination for tourists and that every year they should budget something  for them to take part in Warm Heart Pro Tour while enjoying the natural beauties and company of our hospitable people.

“We believe that this can only be possible if a more inclusive and integrated approach is engaged — an approach  that will see all partners working together in identifying the strongest and most competitive assets which Malawi is endowed with.”

Through this MOU, PGAMW intends to assist the Ministry of Tourism in wooing golf tourists and directly contributing to the GDP generated by the travel and tourism sector in Malawi.

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