By Candia Stephen
Arua-There was jubilation in Arua town and at Green Light Stadium on Saturday after the Mobile Telecom giant MTN announced a Shillings 390 million sponsorship deal with Onduparaka FC.
The deal was jointly signed with the team managers, local government officials and MTN representatives at Desert Breeze hotel in Arua town before a thrilling match between Onduparaka and Soana FC, which the home club comfortably won.
While sealing the deal, the MTN marketing and communications manager, Valerio Okello said following the progressive huge number of fans the team has attracted over the years in its matches both at home and away, the telecom company has decided to partner with the team,
“We have keenly been watching Onduparaka FC grow its fan based and it’s our hope and pride that the team’s huge following will continue,” Valerio said.
The Club and MTN officials during the signing of the sponsorship. Photos by Felix
Onduparaka has over the last two years now, made name and became a popular club in the Uganda Premiership with huge fan base. After the qualification to Uganda Premier League, Betway Company, that remains the main sponsor, was then attracted to sign a Shillings 600 million.
This then also led to rebranding of the stadium to Betway Greenlight Stadium from Paruku. Subsequently, Vendor financial company also offered cash for the club, this has been motivational for the players and the management where the club has been able to buy players with the money.
Benjamin Nyakuni, the club managing director expressed joy over the partnership and urged MTN to continue with the partnership.
“As a club we appreciate the coming in of MTN and hope to continue the partnership,” said Nyakuni.
Benard Atiku, the MP Ayivu and patron of Onduparaka FC, says the progress of the team and the huge fan base is what many sports loving partners will continue to appreciate.
He however urged the players and the fans to ensure that they work harder to keep the partnership with the telecom giant,
Wadri Sam Nyakua, the LC 5 chairman Arua, who represented Arua district local government in the signing of the deal, urged MTN to consider supporting the team in building a stadium at Onduparaka, where the clubs home ground.
Soana and Onduparaka player tussle for ball during the Saturday game.
He called for hard work to achieve success warning that failure has fewer supporters as opposed to success which draws huge support.
However Peter Debele the RDC Arua who presided over the signing of the deal appreciated the clubs effort in attracting sponsorship since they started from the ‘dust’
He urged MTN to continue the support, adding that the huge fan base is a potential market for the telecom company, that continues to enjoy a broader base in West Nile.
Meanwhile following the signing of the deal, Green Light Stadium face was decorated with MTN color and logo, with mega entertainment by the company during the afternoon match between Onduparaka and Soana, which gave the Catepillars a clear 2:0 win,
MTN becomes the second biggest company to announce a multi-million sponsorship deal after Betway.