In order for Namibia to truly realise her goal of becoming of one of the biggest fully-fledged sporting nations on the continent and globally, it will take dedication, commitment and the collective effort from all stakeholders, Minister of Sport, Youth and National Services Jerry Ekandjo strongly believes.
Speaking at the launch and draw of the Debmarine Cup round-of-32 in the capital recently, Ekandjo used the opportunity to call on corporate Namibia to move out of their comfort zones and join government’s efforts of uplifting the country’s youth through sports.
For almost a year now, Namibia has been without premiership football after the Namibia Premier League (NPL) parted ways with longtime sponsors MTC, a move that led to the subsequent dormancy of the country’s flagship football league. Also last year, the country’s U/20 football team could not participate in the Cosafa U/20 Cup due to financial constraints and the same can also be said about various sport codes that could not participate various continental and international events due to persistent financial hiccups.
Given the abovementioned financial clutter faced by almost the entire sport industry, Ekandjo further highlighted that government alone cannot sustain all 54 national sport codes and that’s why the private sector and all good Samaritans need to come on board and compliment government’s efforts – using Debmarine Namibia as a prime example of a dedicated company committed to meeting government halfway with the Debmarine Cup.
“We believe that the investment we are making as national government and corporate Namibia, in partnership with the Namibia Football Association (NFA), we make in availing platforms for developing the game will go a long way in keeping the game alive and worthy indeed. In the same vein, it is my wish that leagues across the country will be in full swing with the support from other corporate and stakeholders in our country,’ said Ekandjo.
“Let us not stand back and watch what will unfold but let’s all be part of progress to make Namibia a better place. In conclusion, finding a generous and loyal sponsor like Debmarine Namibia is never an easy task, so it is important to sustain the relationship. Sponsors need to have a good return on their investment and national sport associations, clubs and athletes therefore have to provide their sponsors with appropriate mileage and good value for their money,” he concluded.