Ministry of Youth and Sports has approved the same game bonuses and allowances for national team players and athletes despite responsible minister Ulemu Msungama earlier demeaning the proposed remunerations as low.
The Malawi National Council of Sports (MNCS) proposed a standardised K50 000 bonus for a win for netball, football and other disciplines’ national team players, K5 000 as daily training allowance and $60 (K45 000) external allowance.
However, the minister shot down the rates, saying they were on the lower side. Msungama told The Nation last month that he had sent the document back to the council for further adjustments.
In a surprise turn of events, the council has circulated a memo to sports associations effecting the same proposed package.
Netball Association of Malawi (NAM) general secretary Carol Bapu in an interview yesterday confirmed receipt of the memo.
“I can confirm we received the communication on November 2. The game bonuses have been raised from K20 000 to K50 000. It is not what we had anticipated, but the good thing is that the letter assures us that further adjustments would be made in the near future,” she said.
Previously, bonuses for a win were at K20 000 while training and external allowances were K1 000 and $50 (K37 000), respectively.
MNCS acting executive secretary Henry Mereka said they would have loved to make huge adjustments but are limited by insufficient resources.
He said the revised rates are not limited to netball and football, but across all disciplines.
“This is the standard for all teams participating in international tournaments. We will revise the rates again in future, resources-permitting,” Mereka said.
Msungama had not responded to our questionnaire at press time.
National netball team captain Carol Mtukule-Ngwira said she was pleased with the adjustment even if they have not been further reviewed after the minister’s query.
She said this was the first time the allowances were raised in her 15 years of service to the national team.
“This is worth celebrating. It was painful to be succeeding at international level while being paid lowly. We thank government for being considerate,” said Ntukule-Ngwira.