MTC sponsors Sam Nujoma Marathon again

WINDHOEK: Mobile Telecommunications Limited (MTC) on Tuesday sponsored N.dollars 160 000 towards the fifth edition of the Sam Nujoma Half Marathon.

The annual event, which has always been held in the capital since its inception in 2011, will this year be held in Swakopmund on 23 May.

It is open to all runners – local and international – and includes the half marathon of over 21,1 kilometres (km) and a 10km race.

Speaking at a media briefing here on Tuesday, Athletics Namibia (AN) president Alna Similo said they have invited 14 countries within the southern African region to participate this year, and they are hoping to attract a sizable number of runners.

“The Sam Nujoma Half Marathon has grown in strides thanks to the generous support of entities like MTC and Coca-Cola, while not forgetting the able support from our government through the Sports Directorate and the Namibian Sports Commission,” she said.

Similo lamented the fact that there is a continuous lack of funding for sports in Namibia, saying it hampers efforts to develop, grow and popularize sports in general.

“I bemoan the fact that we only have a handful of businesses in Namibia that are willing to support and fund athletics through sponsorships. We need to emphasize that we would not be standing here today making all these beautiful announcements had it not been for MTC and Coca-Cola that are our sponsors for the Sam Nujoma Half Marathon,” she stressed.

On his part, MTC’s manager of sponsorship and promotions Joseph Mundjindi said the mobile service provider has sponsored the event to the tune of N.dollars 700 000 thus far.

“We have long figured out that our continued investment in sports have and will contribute to the sustenance of sports programs, indirect employment and reduction of juvenile delinquency rates; the investment in sports is therefore a justifiable ‘expense’ and not a liability,” he said.

The Coca-Cola beverage company is sponsoring drinks.

The senior male and female winners will walk away with N.dollars 10 000 each. The junior male and female winners will receive N.dollars 5 000 each and the male and female veterans N.dollars 4 000 each.

The two 10km category winners will receive N.dollars 5 000, while N.dollars 2 000 is earmarked for both junior male and female winners and N.dollars 1 500 for the two masters winners.

The 2014 winners are Namibia Defense Force athletes Uveni-Nawa Kuugongelwa in the men’s category, and Lavinia Haitope in the women’s category.