By SAMUEL LUKHANDA –
WORLD Boxing Council (WBC) bantamweight champion Catherine Phiri has been offered a scholarship to study sports management in Italy after she completes her secondary education.
Catherine along with 24 other academically talented but underprivileged young Zambian women have been offered scholarships to study business and leadership in universities across the globe.
This is according to a statement released by the first secretary press and public relations at the Zambian High Commission in the United Kingdom (UK), Abigail Chaponda during the launch of the Justina Mutale Foundation scholarships in London.
Zambia’s High Commissioner to the UK, Muyeba Chikonde, said in his welcoming remarks that Zambia attaches great importance to the empowerment of women and girls.
Chikonde said Zambia has practically demonstrated this through various ways and that it was why organisations such as the Justina Mutale Foundation, which is complimenting Government’s efforts, needed to be supported.
He said the choice of Catherine was not an accident but designed to inspire other women and girls to excel irrespective of their background.
Chikonde said the addition of sports management will help Catherine further her education and provide a future beyond boxing.
But the WBC champion when contacted expressed ignorance of the offer and directed queries to her manager Chris Malunga.
Malunga was also in the dark concerning the offer and declined to comment saying he has not yet received any correspondence concerning the scholarship offer.
The Justina Mutale Foundation has partnered with the European School of Economics (ESE) to offer Business and Leadership Scholarships while the Rai University of India will offer Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Scholarships to the women and girls.
Justina Mutale said Catherine and the other recipients will be the first to benefit from the initiative and that other scholarships will go to the vulnerable and under privileged women and girls across Africa.