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MATSAPHA – Namibia and Zambia reigned supreme in the RASA 2023, as they bagged most awards at the glamorous event held at Esibayeni Lodge in Matsapha two days ago.

Both countries returned home with three trophies apiece from the possible 12 categories in the Regional Annual Sports Awards. Namibia excelled in the women’s sports categories, as sprint sensation Christine Mboma walked away with the Junior Sportswoman Award, which was also contested by the country’s swimming star Hayley Hoy. They also bagged the Senior Sportswoman and Senior Sportswoman with disability awards.


Zambia, on the other hand, was named the best country of the region and it also took home the sport team and journalist of the year awards. It was indeed a vacation for Malawi, Mozambique and Zimbabwe, as they failed to make a cut in any category. Notably, the trio had least representatives in the regional awards. On another note, Angola and Lesotho did not participate and were expected to honour the next edition. Meanwhile, Eswatini was lauded by Region V for delivering a classic event.  The African Union Council (AUSC) Region V Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Stanley Mutoya heaped praised on Eswatini Sports and Recreation Council (ESRC) after the success of 2023 RASA. Eswatini reignited the spirit of the regional athletes. The event had not been staged since 2019 following the advent of COVID-19.


“They have defied all the odds and successfully hosted the event when they are coming out of COVID-19. They hosted them even when they not have a strong financial muscle and dedicated their resources to this event to say thank you to the region, administrators, coaches and the athletes,” he said, much to a round of applause. Minister of Sports, Culture and Youth Affairs Harries ‘Madze’ Bulunga, on the other hand, challenged regional athletes to look beyond winning medals and breaking records. “RASA is a window through which the region and Africa should measure our impact on the global stage. It is our language of victory and commitment towards inspiring our youth as the vein guard of our geo-political, cultural and socio-economic heritage,” the minister said.