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Malawi’s AFCON “Juju Man” Rewarded With Residential Stand

Malawi’s unsung hero at the ongoing 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) finals in Cameroon, Richard Justin Zawazawa, has been showered with various materials worth over K3 million back in his homeland.

Zawazawa a.k.a Dinho, the Flames’equipment manager, on Friday received a 15 metre by 30-metre plot in Lunzu, Blantyre, 50 bags of cement, 2 000 cement blocks and 50 iron sheets.

The donations were made by Ana a M’mudzi Development Initiative, under the Namasina brand, alongside Malawian owned US-based OC Cosmetics, dog food distribution company Fame Distributors and building material suppliers Quick Point Construction.

That was in addition to the Tecno Camon-18i smartphone plus a 40GB Internet bundle from mobile communication company Airtel Malawi plc.

Malawi reached the knockout stages of the AFCON finals for the first time in their history in Cameroon after beating Zimbabwe 2-1 and holding star-studded Senegal to a goalless draw.

Zawazawa, as the squad’s kitman, was always on the bench during matches and some of his compatriots did not understand his role and suggested on social media platforms that he was the witchdoctor behind the team’s success.

Though his contribution to the Flames’ success may seem so small as to be not worth considering, local businesses decided to honour him.

Speaking in an interview with The Nation, Ana a M’mudzi director Fatima Nkata, a US-based former television personality, said they thought of assisting the 47-year-old for his noble service to the national football team at AFCON. She said:

We would have loved to give a little something to everyone in the team, but we particularly chose to bless Dinho because of the vital work he does in the background and he remains an unsung hero that needs to be celebrated in a special way.

Zawazawa, a Blantyre resident who is married and has five children, appreciated the assistance which comes after some of his compatriots mocked him on social media, calling him the Flames’ “juju man” (witch doctor). He said:

I know these people tried to poke fun at me. However, I was not worried because I knew that while they thought they were despising me, they were actually giving me blessings. I am really grateful for this.

Zawazawa said he started working as a cleaner at the Football Association of Malawi in 2007 before being appointed equipment manager.

More: The Nation

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