MOC president Oscar Kanjala and his team of officials updated the media on Friday in Blantyre on the progress of the Olympic Games to run between July 27 and August 12 2012.
â€œI am glad to report that 50 percent of the job has been done. We are making progress. We want our preparations to be top class and our representation should set a benchmark for future participation,â€ Kanjala said at Sports Council boardroom.
He cited as indicators of progress, fruitful agreements with UKâ€™s University of Gloucestershire on Malawi team camping there and the commitment of training athletes shown by associations and other stakeholders such as government and sponsors.
MOC treasurer Jappie Mhango said they had managed to negotiate with the university to soften up on its preconditions, including that MOC should spend money during the camp training in the UK and reclaim the money, with strings attached, from the Local Organising Committee.
Malawiâ€™s chef de mission, Flora Mwandira, who is also MOC vice-president, announced that weightlifting has replaced lawn tennis on the list of five disciplines earmarked for the games. The others are boxing, swimming, athletics and taekwondo.
Mwandira said weightlifting has been slotted in because its athletes still have some qualifying events for the London Games. Malawi athletes are yet to meet the Games qualifying time. Two athletes, a female and male, will be selected by July 9 cut-off point.
MOC marketing committee head Dean Pinto said they had lined up several fund-raising initiatives such as dinner dance to meet Malawi teamâ€™s needs including special attire.