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The sisters putting Malawi women’s football on the map



The Chawinga sisters Tabitha and Temwa are beginning to put Malawi in the women’s footballing map

When the Chinese Women’s Super League resumes this weekend it will feature Malawian sisters Tabitha and Temwa Chawinga.

This season will be the first time the sisters have played against each other competitively having appeared together for the national team, Malawian club DD Sunshine and Swedish side Kvarnsveden.

Temwa, 21, will be playing for Wuhan FC and hoping to follow in her big sister’s footsteps after Tabitha was recently voted the league’s Player of the Year for a second year in a row.

Tabitha, 24, earned the award after emerging the league’s top scorer and helping her club Jiangsu Suning become not only champions for the first time in 10 years but also added two other domestic titles to complete a treble.

“She’s a very good player, and the thing is everyone will be working hard to make her team and fans happy,” Tabitha told BBC Sport Africa.

Temwa admits there will be some sibling rivalry: “Both of us will do our best to see who the best player is.”

“Back home the family are very happy about us. My parents never thought their children would one day play football outside of the country, but now it’s happening.”

But she is also thankful to Tabitha for her help in getting her career started.

“My sister has been instrumental in my career progression.” Temwa told BBC Sport Africa.

“She of course made connections for me to leave Malawi to play abroad, but most importantly has always advised me to fight hard, to know what I want and to pursue it without listening to distracting people.”

Tabitha leads the way

Malawi and Jiangsu Suning's Tabitha Chawinga
Malawi’s Tabitha Chawinga has made a big impression in China playing for Jiangsu Suninh

Developing a football career for the sisters has not been straightforward, especially given that Malawi is more famous for its netballers than its women footballers.

Malawi have never qualified for the finals of the Women’s Africa Cup of Nations and so a bit of luck was needed to launch the sisters’ footballing journey.

Tabitha’s journey began when someone spotted her talent as she played in her village with the boys and helped her move to the capital Lilongwe to join DD Sunshine, one of the very few serious women football teams in the country.

“Growing up, I never saw myself as different from boys – whatever they did, I believed I could, and went for it,” she explained.

Her next bit of good fortune was when a young American lady working for a local NGO was persuaded to join DD Sunshine, by two colleagues who were players at the club.

She was later transferred to Sweden by the NGO, where she decided that apart from working she would continue to pursue her newly-found passion of football.

When she approached Krokom Dvarsatts, who were in the Swedish third Division at the time, the club was meticulous in enquiring of where she had played before to make sure they did not violate any transfer rules.

The club contacted DD Sunshine owner David Dube to discuss terms of transfer for the American and he said they could take her without paying on condition they would try out another of his players whom he believed was more talented.

“When Krokom Dvarsatts hesitated, Mr Dube offered to pay visa and flight costs for me to travel to Sweden for trials,” says Tabitha.

“I joined the team for training on the same day I arrived and they were immediately impressed with my strength, dribbling, shooting from far and scoring skills.”

And so in 2014 she became Malawi’s first ever female footballer to play in Europe, her competitive debut was delayed for a few weeks as she was only 17 at the time.

But once she was 18 there was no stopping the young striker as she scored 39 goals in 14 games to emerge as the league’s top scorer.

The following season Tabitha joined second-tier side Kvarnsveden where she continued her exploits, netting 43 goals and helping the club earn promotion to the top league.

The forward’s skills caught the attention of several clubs in Europe, but in January 2018 she chose to accept an offer from Jiangsu Suning to play in the Chinese Women’s Super League.

A sister’s recommendations

Temwa Chawinga
Temwa Chawinga has followed her older sister from Malawi to Sweden and now to China

Before she left Kvarnsveden the club naturally were keen to find a replacement of her calibre and and so Tabitha immediately suggested her younger sister Temwa, who was playing for DD Sunshine.

“The club owner resisted because he did not believe Malawi could produce another good player like me, but I fought hard for my sister, so they eventually agreed to invite her for trials and they signed her,” Tabitha explained.

As Temwa embarked on her European journey her sister made an immediate impact in China.

Tabitha won the golden boot by scoring 17 goals, seven better than Nigeria striker and three-time African Footballer of the Year Asisat Oshoala, who has since moved to Spanish club Barcelona.

Back in Sweden Temwa had been making a name for herself and emulating her big sister as one of the leading scorers for Kvarnsveden, and last season she was top scorer in the league with 35 goals.

Once again big sister was more than happy to recommend Temwa as agents in China were talking to her about how to find an all rounded player like her.

Tabitha had just after she scored 12 goals in 14 games helping Jiangsu clinch the 2019 Chinese league title that they had last won 10 years earlier.

“I recommended my sister Temwa, and I did not have to explain a lot because she was top scorer in Sweden and so Wuhan FC were quick to sign her,” she explained.

Temwa is not concerned that she is in the city where the coronavirus was first seen and is just looking forward to playing football again.

“I feel great because the league is starting again; it was disappointing for it to be cancelled when I had just arrived but then it had to be that way because of Corona,” she said,

“During that period I have been staying indoors and doing some training to keep fit. I did some gym stuff and juggling the ball.

“It will be tough for me since it is my first season while my sister has been here for close to three years, but I will try my best because the club has entrusted me with massive opportunity.”

On the pitch the pair are also helping improve the fortunes of the national team as they led the team to the second round of Tokyo Olympic qualifiers with 14-1 aggregate win over neighbours Mozambique.

They won the home leg 11-1 with Temwa scoring five times to outshine her big sister, who ‘only’ managed a hat-trick.

In the second round they beat Kenya 3-2 in Malawi, with two goals from Tabitha, but then lost 3-0 in the return leg.

The sisters’ achievements have not gone unnoticed back in Malawi with Tabitha not only being named captain of her national team but also being named Malawi Sports Personality of the Year and Sports Woman of the Year in 2019.

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Another blow as Judge throws out Kiggundu’s lawyer Muwema



When court sat on Friday to hear the Kiggundu’s application to stop independent audit, he did not have a written application, and Justice Henry Adonyo instead ordered the plaintiff’s lawyer Fred Muwema to go make a written application seeking court to dismiss the audit and return to court on September 30 for a hearing of the application. But this adds more pressure on Kiggundu who is choking with the loans.

On 31 August, the judge ordered the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Uganda (ICPAU) to carry out and independent audit into the accounts of the businessman and financial statements exchanged between the two parties, and present a report to court.

When asked by journalists why he has filed for an application seeking dismissal of the audit, Fred Muwema had this to say. “We are saying that let the validity and legality of those credit facilities (loans) be decided first before you can audit” He said.

The ruling on the application of the main suit to determine whether the businessman owes loan arrears to the bank is set for 5th October 2020, after which a date for hearing of the case will be set.


Hamis Kiggundu through his companies Ham enterprises and Kiggs International (U) ltd sued DTB branches in Kenya and Uganda for deducting money from his accounts something which the bank contends and said they only acted as per the loan agreement of deducting 30% from Kiggundu’s accounts to recover the credit facilities rendered to him between February 2011 and September 2016

But Court documents filed by the bank in their defense shows that Kiggundu, between February 2011 and September 2016, was granted various credit facilities by the said DTB Banks.

First, via Ham Enterprises Limited, Kiggundu obtained a loan of $6,663,453 and another Sh2.5bn from the DTB (U) to finance his projects in the real estate business.

Later, according to New Vision, he got a facility worth $4.5m through Kiggs International (U) Limited from DTB (K) and mortgaged his properties, which include Plot 328 located at Kawuku on Block 248 Kyadondo, three plots that include 36, 37 and 38 on Folio 1533 Victoria Crescent II situated in Kyadondo and land on Makerere Hill Road on LRV 3716 Folio 10 Plot 923 Block 9.

Documents show that as of January 21, 2020, Kiggundu was in default on payment obligations of $6.298m on the loan facility of $6.663m, as well as sh2.885b on the demand overdraft facility of sh1.5b and the temporary demand overdraft facility of sh1b.

The banks say that Kiggundu was in default on the payment of another $3.662m out of a total loan facility of $4m and another $458,604 on a loan facility of $500,000, as of January 21, 2020.

The DTB consequently served him with a demand notice to either pay up or lose the assets that he submitted as collateral security. The bank threatened to attach a plot on Makerere Hill Road and other prime commercial properties.

Analysts says that Kiggundu’s lawyer is playing delaying tactics aimed at stopping the independent audit as ordered by the court earlier. Kiggundu had wanted court to believe his own audit of loan transactions, but that would amount to injustice to the banks that gave him money-DTB Uganda and DTB Kenya.

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Minister Rukutana charged with attempted murder, remanded




The state minister for Labour, Gender and Economic Development Mwesigwa Rukutana has been remanded to Kyamugorani prison in Mbarara district.

Rukutana appeared before Ntungamo Grade One magistrate Nazifah Namayanja this afternoon from where he was charged with seven offences related to attempted murder, assault, malicious damage, and threatening violence.

Rukutana was captured in a video that went viral on social media showing him grabbing a gun from one of his bodyguards and started shooting at a vehicle belonging to supporters of his political rival Naome Kabasharira. At the time of the incident, Rukutana had just lost the Rushenyi country NRM flag to Kabasharira.

The prosecution alleges that on September 5, 2020, at Kagugu village in Ntungamo district, Rukutana and others still at large assaulted Julius Niwamanya and threatened to kill or injure him together with three others. The others are Stuart Kamukama, Dan Rwibirungi, and Moses Kamukama. 

It is also alleged that Rukutana also willfully and unlawfully damaged a motor vehicle registration number UAR 840X Toyota Rav 4 type which belongs to Moses Muhumuza.

According to the Judiciary public relations officer, Jameson Karemani, Rukutana has not taken a plea of these charges against him since they can only be tried by the chief magistrate who was not in court today.

As a result, the magistrate decided to send him to Kyamugorani, awaiting his return to court on Tuesday.      

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Lira district headquarters closed over COVID-19




Lira district headquarters have been closed after one staff tested positive for COVID-19 last week. 

On Monday morning, district staff were blocked at the gate with only the deputy chief administrative officer, his secretary and the receptionist allowed access to their offices. 

Paul Samuel Mbiiwa, the deputy chief administrative officer says that only heads of department will be allowed at the headquarters while the rest will work from home. He adds that the restriction will help to curb the spread of the virus.

“You see corona is not a joke. We have taken a step at fighting it and that is why you are seeing the staff outside. Even in my office here I do not want people to come if there is anything we can discuss on the phone.”

Francis Okello Olwa, a senior community development officer who doubles as the district spokesperson says that the entire district offices will be fumigated and closed for two days.

Health authorities in the district are planning to take samples from all the staff because they could have interacted with the one who tested positive. Currently, there are 19 COVID-19 patients under treatment at Lira regional referral hospital.     

On Sunday four health workers at the hospital tested positive for COVID-19. Dr Patrick Odongo, a senior medical officer at the hospital also succumbed to the virus.  

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