Minister of Sports Ulemu Msungama has disclosed that Blantyre Youth Centre (BYC) will be opened today to allow netball diehards and the nation pay their tribute to late legendary netball coach Griffin Saenda snr.
BYC was closed due to Covid-19 pandemic, having been launched following renovation of the facility.
“We felt we should hold the funeral ceremony at BYC because that’s where he spent most of his time. We all know that Malawi’s netball history would be incomplete if we don’t list Saenda’s name. This is why the government has offered to buy a casket and pay funeral service expenses,” Msungama said.
Saenda died on Thursday at Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital where he was admitted after collapsing at his residence in Chimwankhunda Township, Blantyre.
He was suffering from diabetes and hypertension.
Saenda is well known for helping the Queens to win bronze medal at 2016 Fast Five Netball World Series. He also helped the Queens to their highest ever rank-fifth position.
On the local scene, he won every major trophy, having coached different sides including Civonets, Silver, Yellow Sisters, First Choice Tigresses [Admarc Tigresses] and presently Kukoma Diamonds (formerly Namagetsi or Escom Sisters).
Several high profile sports personalities have paid their homage to the sleeping legendary coach.
Malawi National Council of Sports acting Executive Secretary Henry Mereka also released a statement in honour of their former employee who mandatory resigned last year, having joined council on April 1, 1997.
Saenda, 68, is survived by 12 children. He hailed from Majanga Village, TA Mwambo in Zomba. He will be buried today at HHI Cemetery in Blantyre.