By Duncan Kaonga
One of the renowned football analyst, George Chiusiwa has called on the Northern Region Football Association (NRFA) to up their game in the quest to find other partners to bankroll its league which is poorly funded.
This comes in after main sponsor for the northern region second tier league, Simama and Sons confirmed his continued support to the NRFA to the tune of 5 million kwacha which is the least compared to other two region associations in the country.
Speaking in an interview, Chiusiwa said the problem is coming from the top notch where the contract agreements on sponsorship is not conducive to the game.
“The main challenge is from the top (Super league of Malawi-Sulom) is not well funded with the sponsorship only at 90 million kwacha and Sulom is having difficulties to convince their main sponsor TNM to be working with other partners a thing which makes it hard for regional associations to find other sponsors,” said Chiusiwa.
Chiusiwa further urged NRFA to cast its net wider to fish other sponsors who can be working hand in hand with Simso to run the daily affairs of the league.
“Now the ball is in NRFA’s hands they need to put up strategic plans which can help to coerce other companies to come in and bail out their situation, teams spend a lot during the season and it’s unfair for them to be battling it out for 2 million kwacha,” he said.
In his reaction, NRFA general Secretary, Masaya Nyasulu said he is greatful for the unconditional support from Simso and pointed out that his association is working tirelessly to convince the corporate world to come in and sponsor the league as the agreements with Simso gives room for other companies to help develop football in the region.
Nyasulu also revealed that the league is run to the tune of 7 million kwacha with the remaining 2 million coming from the Association.
“It’s our wish that our main sponsor to hike the sponsorship but he told us with the political tension which the country was going through also hit the company hard which made it tough for them to increase the sponsorship and as NRFA we are on the ground making sure that we make our teams smile after the end of every season with something worthy taking home,” said Nyasulu
Nyasulu also called on well-wishers to come and help develop the game in the North by being partners with NRFA.
“We ask those companies who want to make their brands well known to people, football is the best way to sell their products and they will not regret and the main problem we gave is lack of companies in the region with most companies based in central and southern region respectively who have their target audience in their respective regions which makes it tough for us to clinch sponsorship deals,” he said.
Last season’s champions, Ekwendeni Hammers walked home with 2 million kwacha and their promotion to the top flight league increased the number of teams from the northern region to 5 after Moyale Barracks, Karonga United, Mzuzu Warriors (formerly Mzuni), Chitipa United managed to survive in the elite league.
The Simso league is the least sponsored second tier league in the country with Central Region Football Association league being run to the tune of 12 million kwacha while Southern region football league is bankrolled with 15 million kwacha from Chipiku stores and Rab Processors respectively.
NRFA has enjoyed a sponsorship from Simso for over 5 years now.