Boxing promoter Nestor Tobias yesterday launched a fund-raising campaign in order to stage Paulus Ambunda's world title fight in Windhoek on March 2.
He said they would run a 'win a car competition' as well as solicit revenue from other sources towards the hosting of the world title fight, which will cost an estimated N$4,2 million.
"Willem Barnard of Suzuki Windhoek has come on board and has sponsored a brand new car to raise money for the world title fight. That is a big sponsor for us and it's a good challenge for other corporates, for the government and for individuals to also come on board and help our sportsmen to participate at the highest level," he said.
Barnard said he was proud to be part of the campaign and called on other corporates to also come on board.
"This is a wonderful occasion for us and we are looking forward to see our new world champion in March. The vehicle also fits in well with this campaign - it is also a bantam weight that punches above its weight, its fuel economy is good and it's very sexy," he said.
To stand a chance to win the brand new Suzuki Swift, members of the public must sms the word "The Rock" to 66722. Each sms will be cost N$5.
Besides the main prize there will be various other prizes to be won, including laptops, cell phones, and VIP tickets to the fight.
MTC spokesman Tim Ekandjo said that his company - the Nestor Tobias Academy's chief backers - would not sponsor the fight since they had not budgeted for it, but said that various fundraising initiatives would be launched to reach the target.
"While we are aware that the MTC Nestor Sunshine Academy has turned to the government for financial assistance, we have agreed that they cannot rely on that, but should make an effort to raise as much money through different fundraising initiatives," he said.
Regarding the 'Win a Car Competition' Ekandjo said they hoped to attract at least 140 000 smses which will generate N$700 000.
Other fund raising initiatives that are being organised include a dinner where corporates and business leaders will be invited to show their support through pledges. They were also planning to get the support of the media through discounts on advertising.
Tobias said he was negotiating with the government for financial assistance but at this stage he could not say how much they would pledge. He was however confident that he would raise the required amount.
"I am confident that we can raise the money and I have guaranteed this. I am risking my own credibility and if I don't get it right I will be in trouble with the World Boxing Organisation, but I am confident. Like I said we've got a good Minister of Sport, we've got a good Prime Minister and President of this country and all these people have the interests of this country at heart and with their blessing and support we will be able to raise this money," he said.
Tobias said the undercard was not finalised yet but said it would include 'big names' like Paulus "Hitman" Moses, Betuel "Tyson" Ushona and Vikapita Meroro.