First Capital Bank (FCB) yesterday contributed K5 million towards the Flames African Cup of Nations (Afcon) Resource Mobilisation Task Force’s ‘Ipatse Moto Golf Tournament’ scheduled for Lilongwe Golf Club on October 2.
The bank is the first company to contribute towards the tournament which Vice-President Saulos Chilima, an ardent golfer, will be the guest of honour.
During a cheque presentation in Blantyre, FCB chief executive officer Jaco Viljoen said they felt obliged to assist considering the long relationship the bank has with the Football Association of Malawi (FAM).
“We are proud to see that some of the players that have been developed through the FCB Under-20 Football League helped the Flames qualify for the Afcon. Therefore, we are happy to contribute towards their preparations for the continental showpiece,” he said.
Added Viljoen: “Qualifying for the finals of a continental championship does not come often and we felt it was the right thing to do to support FAM’s fundraiser for the Flames.”
Flames’ Afcon Resource Mobilisation Task Force chairperson Jabber Alide, who is also FAM first vice-president, said they were happy to see the bank showing its commitment towards the Flames’ well-being.
He said: “We are excited that FCB has come out to support our project. We have been working with them for quite some time and this is the last thing we expected from them knowing that they are already in the game sponsoring the Under-20 League.
“We hope that this gesture will spur other companies who would like to sponsor the golf tournament. We are very grateful to FCB for this support and we do not take it for granted.”
Alide explained that the K5 million will go a long way in meeting their K30 million target at the imminent fundraising golf event.
“Our target is at K30 million and I am pleased to announce that we have pledges from different institutions and individuals and, hopefully, we will exceed our target,” he said.
Vice-President Saulos Chilima is expected to participate in the ‘Ipatse Moto Flames Fundraising Golf Tournament’.
The Flames’ budget for Afcon finals, including preparations, is pegged at K1.5 billion.
The 33rd continental showpiece is slated to run from January 9 to February 6 in Cameroon.
Malawi are in Group B alongside Africa’s top-ranked side Senegal’s Teranga Lions, Guinea’s Syli Nationale and Zimbabwe’s Warriors.
The Flames will start the campaign against Guinea on January 10 at Kouekong Stadium, in Bafoussam, Cameroon.
The Flames’ second fixture is against the Cosafa region rivals Zimbabwe’s Warriors on January 14.
Coach Meck Mwase’s charges will then take on Africa’s top ranked team Senegal on January 18 in the last Group B match.
Malawi qualified for the third Afcon finals after finishing second to leaders Burkina Faso .
Uganda finished third while South Sudan anchored the group.