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Sports

Ministry for grassroots sports development

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By Llywellenie Mpasa

Sports Minister Richard Chimwendo Banda has reiterated the government’s commitment towards promoting sporting activities at the grassroots.

Speaking on Monday at Migowi Primary School ground in Phalombe District during the finals of a competition called Pompo Pompo Bonanza, Chimwendo Banda said the government wants to provide young people with a platform for nurturing their talents in sports disciplines.

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“We want people to start believing that they can bank on sports for a career. Earning a living through sports is possible. We can shape our children into great sports personalities,” he said.

Chimwendo said the convening power of sport makes it a compelling tool for social change.

“Malawians are a sport-loving people. This is evidenced by the fact that they gather in large numbers each time there is a sports activity. We, therefore, need to harness the potential of sports to change our country for the better through sustainable management and processes. This can be a catalyst towards the country’s 2063 development blueprint.

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“The role that sports can play in the country’s development has been downplayed in the past. But over the years, sport has increasingly demonstrated its potential to contribute towards national economic growth and development, thus augmenting national efforts towards achievement of its desired middle income economic status,” he said.

The minister said boosting grassroots football and promoting youth participation in sports is one of the ministry’s priorities.

“We have seen countries adopting different sports approaches to ensure that they get the best out of their youths. They do this through youth development programmes and talent enhancing activities that provide avenues for the skillful to attain the best.

“This is why we have recently engaged Mary Waya and Kinnah Phiri, who have played and coached at the highest level in netball and football. We want them to assist in the implementation of grassroots talent identification,” he said.

Phalombe Coach Bonifacio Kwilombwe commended the ministry for its efforts in developing sports.

The match ended in favour of Phalombe, who beat Mpasa United 3-1. In netball, Phalombe Sisters thumped Mpasa Young Sisters 31-6.

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