Government has at last conceded that it was duped by the much touted sponsorship of the Netball Assiciation of Malawi (NAM) by a UK based Rach Family Trust through the sponsor’s chairperson Ravi Rach and now the contract will be terminated.
Minister of Labour, Youth Sports and Manpower Development Francis Kasaila has said Rach has been ducking authorities to explain the failure to honour contractual obligations to fund Malawi national netball team assignments
NAM and RFT signed a K600 million five-year pact last year, which, among other things, would see the latter giving the netball governing body K120 million for the Queens and other netball programmes annually, but over a year down the line, the trust has only released 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.
Analysts had earlier raised questions as to the main motive of the sponsorship with some suspecting that Ravi Rach 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
Kasaila has since advised NAM to terminate the deal with Rach, saying it is time to “look for another serious potential sponsor.”
NAM president Khungekile Matiya confirmed that 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, even President Mutharika was duped.
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 administrators.
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