Government has hailed the ‘Honourable Kondwani Nankhumwa Football and Netball Trophy’ tournament organizing committee for the “excellent” competition’s final games, which were played on Sunday, December 16, 2018 at Chisitu School ground in Mulanje Central constituency.
Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Labour, Youth, Sports and Manpower Development, Joseph Mwandidya, who was Guest of Honour at the finals, said he was impressed by level of discipline among the competing teams as well as the thousands of spectators.
“I wish to acknowledge the high level of commitment by your MP (Member of Parliament) and Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, Honourable Nankhumwa in promoting sport in this area.
“I wish to assure the Honourable minister and all of you that government shall continue to support initiatives such as this one because we are well aware that the grassroots is a breeding ground for national talent,” said Mwandidya.
The minister invested over MK13 million in prize money and other costs.
The PS said he was impressed by the best football talent that was on display on Sunday, particularly in the football finals between Chisitu United and Warriors United. He said most of the young boys had the potential to play for big national clubs like Big Bullets and Wanderers and even make it further to play for English premiership clubs. They can earn much money and support their respective families and communities.
“Best players are not created overnight. Natural talent has to be nurtured in order to develop them into best players. One of the ways to nurture talent and mould best players in netball, football and other sporting disciplines is through tournaments like this one,” said the PS.
Senior Chief Chikumbu for the area commended the MP for his “immeasurable love for his constituents as evidenced by unprecedented social and economic development in the area, including sports development”.
Nankhumwa informed the gathering that the tournament returns at the end of the rainy season to provide five-star entertainment for the people of Mulanje Central.
“I am committed to offer more financial and material support to make this competition even better. I wish to reiterate that I will soon be buying a 36-seater coaster (bus) to ease transport woes that the teams face when participating in other leagues such as the Southern Region and Mulanje,” said Nankhumwa.
He told Nyasa Times in an interview that the reason why he sponsors this competition is because he is well aware that sport brings communities together and that it makes a significant contribution to the social and economic development of communities and the nation.
“Sport is recognized internationally as an effective tool for transforming lives. Sport brings individuals and communities together, bridging economic, cultural or ethnic divides. Sport has an impact on health and acts as an effective tool for social mobilization and supporting health activities such as HIV/AIDS awareness campaigns,” he said.
Warriors United won the football trophy finals after beating Chisitu United 3-1 after post-match penalties. The game had ended in a one-all draw. Warriors got MK400, 000 in prize money and a trophy while Chisitu received MK350, 000. Third-placed Young Professionals received MK300, 000 and Best Eleven got MK250, 000.
In netball, Mighty Queens edged Happy Queens 19 baskets to 17. They received MK300, 000 while the runners-up received MK250, 000. Young Hammers Sisters and Monkers Sisters, third and fourth placed, received MK200, 000 and MK150, 000, respectively.
Former national netball team captain, Mary Waya, was among some high-profile guests at the event.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :