By John Tuerijama
PRESIDENT Hage Geingob’s intervention into the current football crisis has produced the anticipated outcome after it was announced on Wednesday that Mobile Telecommunications Limited (MTC) has agreed to inject much-needed funding to the tune of N$15 million into the Namibia Premier League.
Making the announcement at State House yesterday on the progress made, NPL Interim Committee member Ranga Haikali said the 2017 elite football league season is now billed to start on May 12 and will conclude in November this year.
The league kick-off countrywide is scheduled on the day that Founding President Sam Nujoma will be celebrating his 88th birthday; NPL interim committee chairperson, Franco Cosmos said the committee has deliberately decided on that particular date.
Premier league teams will have to honour their double header football games following the understanding between the NPL and the Namibia Football Association (NFA).
The Football Stakeholders meeting has been informed that despite MTC making a U-turn, the NPL interim committee has since its appointment on February 25 made some in-roads, having written letters to a number of companies sourcing sponsors and that has produced positive results.
Haikali said that apart from MTC’s N$15 million sponsorship, they are also awaiting for a response from Ohlthaver and List Group of Companies, who expressed interest in sponsoring football.
He said that all they (NPL interim committee) are waiting for is the express value of the sponsorship in terms of how much O&L is willing to invest.
Deloitte Namibia, an accounting firm has agreed to sponsor the corporate governance of the NPL while PC Centre Namibia has agreed to provide computer hardware and laptops, in other words PC Centre will be the official Information Technology (IT) sponsor of the NPL.
A number of private companies including financial institutions are also expected to come on board of which they would enjoy some branding rights at the football stadiums in varying percentages.
The NPL interim committee will have a meeting with the NPL Board of Governors (BoG) on April 8 to inform the BoG on the progress made since their appointment last month.
MTC board chairperson, Elvis Nashilongo said the organisation and leadership within football is the determining factor as the local mobile giant wants to see improvement in terms of organisation and leadership, and also the promotion of MTC’s brands.
He said MTC values its association with football despite their limited resources on how to assist local football.
Nashilongo said they will engage the NPL interim committee but also urged the corporate sector to fully come on board in the rescuing of the country’s number one sport.
Also speaking at the football stakeholders meeting, was former sports commissioner, Amos Shiyuka who with his fellow former commissioner, Elise Petersen were appointed by the Sport Ministry to investigate the status of sport in the country.
Since their appointment a few weeks ago, Shiyuka said they have approached a number of private companies whom they have engaged individually to seriously consider prioritising sponsoring football.
As far as football is concerned, Shiyuka said they have engaged the NPL interim committee, NFA and MTC in mapping out a lasting solution to the current football fiasco.
The two-member committee of Shiyuka and Petersen is expected to report back to the line Ministry on their findings regarding their investigation into sports and recommend some remedial action that needs to be taken.
Confidente. Lifting the Lid. Copyright © 2015