Sports

Oscar Kanjala withdraws from Moc race

Malawi Olympic Committee (Moc) President, Oscar Kanjala, has withdrawn his candidature and will not seek re-election when the body goes to polls on Saturday.

Kanjala was expected to face Moc Secretary General, Jappie Mhango, in the race for the hot seat.

However, the former Basketball Association of Malawi (Basmal) president, through his lawyer, asked Moc to withdraw his nomination.

Following the development, Mhango, who is also a parliamentarian for Rumphi North, is expected to get the Moc presidency unopposed.

Moc Administration Manager, Naomi Chinatu, confirmed Kanjala’s withdraw but declined to comment further.

“Yes, he [Kanjala] has withdrawn but I am not in the office to give you additional details. I am at a funeral,” he said.

But in a letter dated 18th March 2020 addressed to the chairperson of Moc Judicial Commission, Kanjala said his decision to withdraw was based on wishing the Olympic movement well.

“I have settled for this decision to ensure that the Olympic Movement continues to enjoy respect of all its stakeholders as a shining example of an organisation that upholds its values. As you might be aware elections have the potential to divide society, and sport is not spared.

“Mindful of the current scenario with the upcoming Moc elections, I am convinced my decision to stand aside is most appropriate. I take cognizance of the power of sport to unite people where divisions exist. One of the fundamental principles of Olympism aims at promoting a peaceful society concerned with the preservation of human dignity. There can be no better opportunity than the forthcoming elections for me as a sitting President of the Olympic Movement in Malawi to champion this Olympic agenda. For me, sport must come first, and I sincerely hope that other spheres of Malawian community can learn from sport,” the letter reads.

Kanjala then wished the rest of the contestants the best and most peaceful elections ever.

In reaction, Mhango applauded Kanjala for following the ideals of Olympics.

“It takes tough men to make decisions and this is what exactly my colleague and brother has done,” he said.

Last week sources indicated that Mhango had received an overwhelming response after 12 affiliates nominated him at the expense of Kanjala’s one.

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