The finals of the Presidential National Trophy saw Kukoma Diamonds being triumphant over their rivals, the Tigresses at Blantyre Youth Center on Saturday.
An observation made by the Malawi National Council of Sports was that spectators watched the game free of charge as there were no gate charges imposed.
The Council has therefore made it clear that it shall summon the Netball Association of Malawi for failing to permanently introduce gate charges for both local and international games.
Speaking on behalf of the Sports Council, board chairperson, James Chuma stated that it was disheartening that Nam was failing to commercialize the sport. Also, he noted the thousands of spectators at the event on Saturday which went to the extent of hindering top officials to follow proceedings easily.
“Elsewhere, sport is a big industry. It employs a lot of people. There is need for Nam to put proper mechanisms to benefit from the sport. People are supposed to pay to watch such games. Money realized from the gates can be pumped back into the sport,” he said.
Chuma emphasizes that lack of proper facilities should not be an excuse, as previously Nam managed to effect gate fees during the Africa Netball Championship Malawi hosted in 2013 at the BYC and College of Medicine Sports Complex.
“What is stopping Nam from using the same facility to introduce gate charges during local games?” he quizzed.
“Why should a lot of people like that watch the game for free? Anyway, we want to meet them and brainstorm to curb this culture. The netball association needs to introduce gate fees gradually and reasonably to introduce this culture among locals,” he said.
Chuma said Sports Council was running sport business management courses to equip local administrators with skills to commercialize sporting activities, including netball.
Nam general secretary, Carol Bapu, said the tournament was a success and they will evaluate what must be done to permanently introduce gate fees.
Calls demanding the introduction of gate charges have been growing for years.
Last year a lot of spectators turned up to watch different competitions, including the Rainbow Paints Southern Region Netball League, GOtv Netball Champions League and Airtel Money national netball trophy but there was no gate charge.