The Northern Region Football Association vice chairperson, Felix Mbonekera has stressed on the need for sports reporters to be considered receiving Covid-19 food relief packs which other sports personalities are receiving from the country’s soccer governing body, FAM.
Mbonekera was speaking in Mzuzu on the sidelines after FAM’s second vice president, Othaniel Hara launched the Covid-19 food relief packs distribution exercise in the northern region on Thursday at Rab Processors regional offices.
Mbonekera said, some reporters solely report on sports hence losing some of their benefits and opportunities following the suspension of sporting activities in the wake of Covid-19 pandemic.
“I am of the view that this Covid-19 food pack distribution exercise should be extended to the sports writers because the break in sporting activities has also greatly affected them, some might have even lost some of their benefits in the wake of Covid-19 break,” Mbonekera said.
Speaking during the function FAM’s second vice president, Othaniel Hara said the soccer governing body’s executive committee is likely to meet and consider whether the relief food pack distribution exercise can be extended considering that it might take longer for football players to recover from financial woes emanated from Covid-19 break.
“As an executive we are likely to meet and make an assessment as to whether the relief food pack distribution exercise can be prolonged, it’s funding from FIFA so we need to look into some technicalities which needs proper scrutiny, but hopefully that will be put across for a possible construction,” Hara said.
Several sports media personalities who were interviewed by this publication agreed with the NRFA vice chairperson (Mbonekera) saying as stakeholders in football development, journalists should also benefit from the relief food rations.
In an interview with one of the country’s local media outlets, The Malawi Metro Online, vice chairperson of the Football Journalists Association, Deddrich Freddrich made an appeal to the stakeholders to assist sports journalists with personal protective equipment (PPEs) considering how vulnerable reporters are when discharging their duties.
“There is talk of football resuming next month, alot is being said about how players, officials and other stakeholders will be protected from coronavirus. But there is one thing for sure that stakeholders are forgetting, the role of the media and how they will be protected during the matches,” Deddrich said.
Meanwhile, it is yet to be confirmed as to whether sporting activities (football) will indeed resume next month (August) considering a total of 15 176 coronavirus tests which have been conducted giving results of 60 new cases, 1 069 active cases, 307 recoveries, 16 deaths and 1 492 confirmed cases.