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Corporate world shuns Region 5 Youth Games

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A majority of the local companies have shunned the 2022 Africa Union Sports Council (AUSC) Region 5 Youth Games slated to take place from December 2 to 11 in Lilongwe.

With just two weeks before the Games, the Local Organising Committee (Loc) has only unveiled NBS Bank, which committed K60 million towards the event as the main sponsor.

Then followed a donation from the Pakistani Community worth K500,000.

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They donated 500 packs of drinking water, exercise books, rulers and ball point pens. Ubuntu Water Beverages and Lucky One Hotel also offered support to the Games.

However, Loc approached several companies seeking support for the Games but very few companies have supported the event.

Loc also hosted the companies to a breakfast in Lilongwe in a bid to woo the corporate world to sponsor the games.

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According to information, which Malawi News Sport has seen, the Loc secured sponsorship for accommodation, branding and water valued at K233 million.

Director of Marketing and Public Relations for Loc, Loveness Thole admitted that it was tough to woo partners to support the Games due to economic challenges the companies were facing.

“We are happy with the companies that have supported us. We understand the economy is not doing well, but we feel that companies could have done more. It is a plea to the corporate world to support the organising committee with few days before the games,” she said.

Minister of Youth and Sports Richard Chimwendo Banda recently admitted that the Games have received lukewarm reception from the corporate world.

However, Chimwendo said he was optimistic that some companies will come at the eleventh hour with sponsorship.

“We are not getting much support from the corporate world as we expected. Apart from NBS Bank and a few more, honestly not much, but we cannot give up and we will still approach them to support the games,” Chimwendo Banda said on the sidelines of this year’s Judo championship in Lilongwe.

The Malawi government has invested over K13 billion in the Games and another K20 billion towards construction of new sports facilities and rehabilitating the existing facilities ahead of the event.

Griffin Saenda Sports Complex and Aquatic Sports Complex have been constructed for the games.

By shunning the games, the companies have missed a big opportunity to market their brands.

Malawi Confederation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry Chief Executive Officer Chancellor Kaferapanjira was not readily available Friday.

However, in June this year, he urged the companies to use the Games to market their brands. The games will attract over 2500 athletes from 10 countries namely hosts Malawi, Angola, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Mozambique, Botswana, Namibia, Lesotho and eSwatini.

During the opening ceremony, Malawi Under-17 National Football Team will face Botswana at Bingu National Stadium on December 2.

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