Southern Region Football Association League (SRFAL) has received a three-year K42 million sponsorship from Rab Group of Companies, making it the richest league on the land.
This comes barely a week after the Association parted ways with former sponsor in 2018 season, United Purpose who indicated that they won’t renew the one-year K11 million contract with SRFA, leaving the league in destitute without a sponsor.
Rab Group of Companies, who beat a bid of five companies who were vying for the sponsorship of SRFL, will be bankrolling the sponsorship of the league to a tune of K 14 million every season with an optional for extension every year.
Speaking at the unveiling of the sponsorship at Football Association of Malawi (FAM) Head Offices, Mpira Village in Chiwembe, Blantyre, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Rab, Ahmed Sunka said the league would be branded ‘Thumbsup Southern Region Football League’.
The Rab CEO said they were driven to sponsor the league by the fans who consume their products including Thumbsup drink adding that they want their newly-launched drink to be associated with football and fans in Malawi, hence calling the league ‘Thumbsup SRFL.’
He said that, “our expectations are that football should be played fairly in the country and everyone is given a fair chance to play and fans should be allowed to enjoy the games. We are looking at other sponsorships as well and this one is a three year annually renewable contract.”
Sunka added that the company is looking forward to also sponsor other Premier Division Leagues and also sponsoring other football disciplines not only football. He also said that Rab in a month time will be announcing other plans for the Flames.
FAM President Walter Nyamilandu said through the sponsorship, their agenda to develop football in the districts would be realized adding that the just ended regional leagues select tournament dubbed rough diamonds showcased talents in the districts.
“These are the players that super league will need as we are starting the season and they are going to feed into the Malawi National Team. We are casting our nets wider to be able to scout for the talents available in the districts,” Fam President explained.
Nyamilandu commended SRFA for landing a long term three-year sponsorship and the fighting spirit and perseverance all these years when they had sponsors on a short term basis.
SRFA Chairperson, Raphael Humba while expressing his delight for getting a sponsor from a very big company like Rab Processor with huge sponsorship money.
He said that, “We will try to excise transparency and accountability. To sustain the sponsorship, we will make sure to do what we have been doing with other sponsors. They have started with K14 million but they can review within the season and we will make sure that they are happy and we are happy.”
The SRFA has for the past five years changed sponsors, at some point in time the head of state was the sponsor of the league. Arkay Plastics was once the sponsors of the league before Masters Security came in with K10 million package in 2017.
(Written by Mphatso Sam/ Malawi News Agency/Mana)