Namibia’s oldest sporting entity Tigers Football Club rewrote the history books when the newly crowned Namibian champions honoured their best performers in the most dignified fashion.
Tigers held their year end awards ceremony at the Roman Catholic Church Hall in the heart of Namibia’s capital Windhoek on Saturday evening – Oh! and what an occasion it turned out to be.
Having uncharacteristically lived in the shadows of eternal rivals African Stars, Black Africa, Blue Waters, Orlando Pirates and lately, kid brother Tura Magic over the last three decades – Ingwe have finally awoken from their slumber.
Not only did the glittery gathering threaten to upstage the triumphant Donkerhoek outfit’s flawless on-field performance in the just ended MTC Premiership campaign – Ingwe took their game to the next level.
Alfred Clayton, Operations Manager at Profile Investments, Tigers’ principal sponsor, stunned the packed to the rafters hall when the flamboyant business mogul announced that the club has resolved to up their prizes for some of the award recipients.
Inspirational skipper and incumbent MTC Premiership double-award winner Abes Iimbondi was the chief beneficiary on the night. The free-scoring Brave Warriors attacking midfielder was deservedly chosen the best player of the season, claiming the N$5 000 cash prize.
“We have resolved to top up the N$5 000 with another N$20 000, bringing the total amount to N$25 000. As if this is not enough, the club has also decided to present Iimbondi with a brand-new Polo vehicle,” Clayton said amidst rapturous applause.
More was still to come when it was revealed that multiple title winning coach Brian “Oubaas” Isaacs, son of former Tigers great Ferdinand “Buti Ferre” Akwenye, would be receiving an extra incentive apart from the N$5 000 bestowed upon him as proud recipient of the prestigious Chairman’s Award.
Isaacs, who had amongst an array of lucrative employment perks a company car in his possession, was told to permanently keep the car, a state-of-the-range BMW.
Keynote speaker, Alex Shimuafeni, a staunch Tigers supporter and product of the Donkerhoek area on the outskirts of Katutura township, where he rubbed shoulders with the likes of club legends Uushona Hiskia, Alele Kapule, the late Teenage Iiyambo and giant shot stopper Dax Andjamba, challenged the team to emulate this season’s astonishing performance.
Tigers won the MTC Premiership title hands down with three matches to spare – a rare feat in the annals of domestic football.
Shumuafeni has been at the forefront of charity activities and his philanthropic spirit is further enhanced by his portfolio as the founding chairperson of the Donkerhoek Social Club, a charitable organisation.
Its primary objective is to uplift the plight of elderly people, vulnerable children and needy communities residing in the Donkerhoek area, including former club captain Ndapewa “Bricks” Hangula.
The latter is currently wheelchair-bound after suffering multiple life-threatening injuries from a horrific car accident.
The gathering was graced by former Tigers’ stalwarts and officials, as well as well known socialites, among them Onesmus Shikongo Akwenye, Oubaas “Siwelele” Mokwena, Sii Nampa Pescha, Demu Hipondoka, Hilifa Mbako, Escher Luanda, Dolly Nashandih, Irene Kurtz, Maggy Mbako, Commissar Olsen Kahiriri and the who’s who in the circles of local elites.