Malawi National Council of Sports has spelled out doom for sports associations that rely on government funding.
The warning comes following the council’s budget cut from this financial year’s K1.3 billion (about $1.9million) to K1 billion (about $1.14million) in the 2016/17 National Budget expected to come into effect on July 1.
The National Budget, which was unveiled in Parliament last week, has hit a record K1.1 trillion but the sports associations will not benefit from the rise as Treasury slashed the sports budget.
Sports Council executive secretary George Jana disclosed that they asked for around K3 billion (about $4.5million) from the Ministry of Finance, Economic Planning and Development.
“We are stunned that what we are being given is far low. We expected more because this is the year for Olympic Games,” he said.
“Added to that, we are also sending several teams to Youth Games in Angola this year. All these activities need funds.”
Jana hoped that they can win over members of Parliament during the cluster meeting so they can push for increased funding.
He said: “In addition to this, the Youth Games which are being held in Angola will be hosted by Malawi in 2022. Part of the funding we asked for was meant for preparations such as the renovation of the sports infrastructure. We just hope that Parliament will take note of our concerns.”
Sports Council has warned that the development could disrupt the country’s participation in these international tournaments.
Over 10 associations, including the Football Association of Malawi (FAM) and Netball Association of Malawi (NAM), receive grants from the council’s budgetary allocation which they mostly use for national team activities.
Ministry of Sports and Culture spokesperson Christopher Mbukwa said they will continue lobbying for more funding at the meeting with clusters of committee of Parliament on Monday.
“MNCS officials are expected to meet the committee where we will negotiate for more funds,” he said. n