Malawi National Council of Sports (MNCS) says it is working on a tentative plan for the resumption of sport, giving hope of sporting activities returning to life.
MNCS suspended all sporting activities in March this year in compliance with coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic precautionary measures, especially restrictions of public gatherings to 100 after President Peter Mutharika declared Malawi a State of Disaster.
Sports Council acting executive secretary Henry Mereka yesterday said: “We are trying to come up with a plan on how sport can resume and obviously there will have to be consultations with relevant stakeholders.
“To that effect, a statement will be issued in the next few days.”
Mereka said sports disciplines that will be classified as low-risk could be considered to set the tone.
Meanwhile, Football Association of Malawi (FAM) president Walter Nyamilandu yesterday said the association is set to start a consultative process to resume football in August with the relevant stakeholders, including MNCS this week.
He said: “Initial meetings will start this week. We will be submitting our case to restart football in August backed by a Covid-19 Football Health and Safety Plan.”
Netball Association of Malawi (NAM) president Khungekile Matiya applauded Sports Council for the move, saying: “This is exciting news. It is good news for the netball fraternity which has missed netball so much.
“We will wait to hear from Sports Council and work hand in hand with the Ministry of Health and all relevant stakeholders to observe all the preventive measures to control the spread of Covid-19.”
On his part, Malawi Professional Boxing Control Board president Lonzoe Defector Zimba described MNCS’s move as relieving.
He said: “To be honest, it has been tough for our boxers and it is encouraging to hear that Sports Council is working on a restart plan.”
Golf Union of Malawi president Hudson Kantwanje said golfers are eagerly looking forward to the day Sports Council will lift the suspension on sports activities.
He said: “I know there are some measures that will be put in place and we are ready and willing to comply. As a union, we have already put in place measures to mitigate the spread of the pandemic for those involved in social golf.”
Basketball Association of Malawi general secretary (GS) Peter Gomani said: “It is the good news that we have been eagerly waiting to hear from Sports Council as regards the way forward.
“I believe once the suspension is lifted, we will start executing our plans, including holding zonal elections. This will also bring joy to athletes and fans.”
Volleyball Association of Malawi (VAM) GS Jairos Nkhoma also applauded the step taken by the council, saying:
“We really need to plan and find a better way to restart our activities and take into consideration the precautionary measures,” he said.