They say failing to prepare is preparing to fail. The saying may come to pass for four athletes that Malawi has sent to Kampala, Uganda to take part in Malawi athletes camped at official’s house the International Association of Athletics Federations (Iaaf) World Cross-Country Championship today.
During preparations, two athletes Cephas Kasteni and Chancy Master and a coach Moses Kondowe were accommodated in a lodge in Area 23 while the other two athletes Cecilia Mhango and Harry Sichale were lodging at the house of Athletics Association of Malawi secretary general Frank Chitembeya as a way of cutting costs.
Chitembeya was forced to engage a cook for the athletes during their week’s stay in ‘camp’ as another way of cutting costs because the funds could not allow them to eat at a restaurant.
According to Chitembeya, out of K3.6 million budget for preparations and travel expenses to Kampala, the association only secured K1.1 million, which was not enough.
“Honestly, we shouldn’t expect much from these athletes after failing to support them in the preparations for the games ahead,” said Chitembeya.
Malawi National Council of Sports (MNCS) executive secretary George Jana accused AAM of lacking seriousness, saying the athletes’ poor preparations guarantees failure and embarrassment.
He wondered why AAM decided to participate in the games when they knew that there were no resources.
“You know what, these associations start something knowing quite well that they don’t have funds so that when government notices that the result is going to embarrass us, then we should come in to help. That is not the way to do things. Ask them how much the association has put into this, you will realise that there is nothing,” said Jana.
Of the K1.1 million that AAM had for the preparations, K898 000 was provided by Sports Council while K200 000 was provided by the Malawi Olympic Committee. Jana also questioned the purpose of Malawi’s participation.
“Even the competition they are participating in, if you ask them what they are going to get from it, they will say it is only a requirement or that they want our athletes to gain exposure, really?