Mbabane: The Minister of Sports Culture and Youth Affairs Harried ‘Madze’ Bulunga has launched a football covid-19 vaccination drive themed ‘Tight Marking Against COVID-19’.
Speaking during the launch at the Lobamba Tenchnocal center the Minister stated that the ‘Tight Marking against COVID-19″ Football Vaccination Campaign aimed at encouraging football stakeholders across the country to vaccinate in order to allow for the safe and full resumption of football activities in Eswatini.
The campaign is delivered in conjunction with the Eswatini Football Association.
Bulunga noted that football is played by thousands across the country’s Leagues and passionately followed by thousands more and has enough power and capacity to unite us towards herd immunity.”
“It is, therefore, our challenge as the football family, be it supporters, players, officials- all of us who feed into this vast football supply chain, from the dusty leagues all the way to the lights of Somhlolo Stadium- to do the right thing and get vaccinated,” he said.
The Minister of Health Lizzie Nkosi expressed gratitude to the country’s football fraternity for the partnership that will bring new energy to our vaccination campaign.
Nkosi encouraged football people to use those same values and help bring the ball into our court as the Ministry of Health. If we don’t do this, by December we will have the 4th wave & start losing people again.”
The EFA President Peter Simelane, said as the football fraternity they were looking at ways to have a competition where they will determine the club with the most vaccinated fans during the course of this campaign and incentivize clubs who will lead.
PLE Chairman Mark Carmichael said the campaign will help put football back where it deserves to be. “Through football, we can revive our country’s economy and through football, we will defeat COVID-19.”
Supporters Rep Knowledge Ngwenya, said they believe that of the 67 percent needed to vaccinate for the country to reach herd immunity, half of it will come from football. He said football will not disappoint Government. “We will sensitize our fellow supporters to also vaccinate,” he said.
The launch of the campaign has seen football players, supporters & officials take the vaccine, including Mbabane Swallows’ Wonder Nhleko, Mbabane Highlanders’ Mlamuli Nkambule & Manzini Wanderers supporter Sdumo Ngwenya.