National Bank of Malawi announced on Saturday that the sponsorship for the 3rd edition of the MO626 College Basketball tournament has increased to K63 million up from K30 million that was first disbursed for the first edition.
This was announced by National Bank’s Head of e-banking, William Kaunda at the colourful launch of the third edition held at the Polytechnic in Blantyre that was spiced with various activities including a glamorous parade from the Bank’s headquarters in the Central Business District to the main venue.
“We at National Bank are proud that this tournament is inculcating a culture of discipline, team work, maturity, camaraderie and at the same time developing of the game.
“In both the first and second editions we saw greater appreciation from the participating students and their supporters that translated in them becoming our business partners,” Kaunda said.
Guest of honour was Inkosi Mzikubola Jere from Mzimba, who himself is a retired basketballer and was specially considered because of his passion for the game in which he is facilitating the construction of basketball court for his subjects.
“This is another wonderful day for basketball and I am very happy to be sharing it with you all
“Allow me to to express my kind and sincere gratitude to National Bank and Basketball Association of Malawi for inviting and allowing me to be part of this launch.
“National Bank is showing great commitment and utmost dedication in helping foster the development of the game of basketball.
“However, I have also been reliably informed that this is the final year of the three-year sponsorship agreement and in this regard let me lobby on behalf of BASMAL and indeed for all college students and the youth by humbly requesting our sponsors to extend and renew this agreement further beyond the 2019/2020 season.
“I do so because the tournaments helped to improve standards of the game; they accorded college students an opportunity to participate in competitive spirit and have helped build the spirit of discipline by keeping the students busy instead of engaging in unacceptable behaviours.”
He also applauded BASMAL for building a cordial relationships with the US National Basketball Association (NBA) and world basketball governing body FIBA, which prioritises infrastructure development, training of coaches, referees and providing equipment.
“The future of sport in general and basketball in particular is bright in Malawi and we must rise to the challenge.
“In most developed countries, sport has brought glory to their nations and we would do the same — Kenya is a good example.”
He also disclosed that he is able to facilitate construction of the basketball courts and other related materials in Mzimba through his association with NBA’s Commissioner, Adam Silver, who is his former high school classmate whilst he was living in the US.
“I developed passion for basketball whilst I was studying in the US and Silver and several other players happened to be my team mates, who went on to play in top NBA teams.
“Silver and I have been in touch ever since. In fact, he accepted to come to Malawi to become my best man during my wedding.
“When I relocated to Mzimba to take up my role as a chief, he accepted to assist me in providing the youths in my chietaincy proper basketball courts where they can enjoy their game,” he said.
The parade from the Central Business District to the main venue set Blantyre abuzz which was by participated by colourfully dressed students and National Bank’s members of staff, that was spiced by Malawi Prisons Brass Band.
At the venue, there was a performance by popular performing artist, Piksy, who dazzled the students, especially the ladies, who joined in singing two of his popular songs.
The launch’s exhibition games involved the Polytechnic against Zomba Institute of Management and Accounting (ZIMA) for the ladies and the Polytechnic against MCA Cardinals in men’s.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :