Amateur boxing in dire need of funds for 2016

21 Dec 2015 17:00pm
WINDHOEK, 21 DEC (NAMPA) – The Namibia Boxing Federation (NBF) is in need of funds to send boxers to represent the country at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro in August next year.
Two boxers represented Namibia at the 2012 Olympic Games that where hosted in London in the United Kingdom. The boxers were Mejandjae Kasuto and Jonas Matheus.
The two boxers qualified for the games after performing well at the Amateur International Boxing Association (AIBA) Africa Olympic qualifiers that were held in Casablanca, Morocco that year.
Speaking to Nampa on Monday, the newly elected treasurer of the NBF, Kenneth Muatara said they are worried that this will be the first time since Independence in 1990 that Namibia might not be able to send boxers to the biggest continental games.
“In March next year we will have Olympic Games qualifiers in Cameroon, but our boxers might not even make it there because we do not have any funds to prepare them or for them to even participate in friendly games.
“I am very worried that Namibia will not have boxers representing us at the Olympics and that will really be bad news for the sport because it will be the first time since Independence this will happen,” he said.
The NBF is also planning to participate in the Zone Four boxing tournament to be hosted in Mozambique in January, but Muatara said the team is still in search of funds and boxers might not go to that country.
“We are planning on taking 10 boxers to the Zone Four tournament which we will use as preparation for the qualifiers in Cameroon.
“We wrote the Ministry of Sports, Youth and National Services and the Sports Commission four months ago asking for funds, but we are still waiting for a response,” Muatara said.
He also said if Team Namibia is to improve its chances of qualifying for the Olympics Games they would need to participate in two friendly matches.
“We are going to compete against boxers from the rest of Africa in Cameroon and we really want to have more boxers representing the country in Brazil,” he said.
He however added that this is not possible because they do not have equipment to host a training camp and some of the boxers are staying with their trainers or at the NBF offices waiting to start with the training.
“I hope before the qualifiers we will have the needed money to at least prepare well. We are also calling on the private sector to step in and help the team out since we will be representing the whole nation,” he said.