WORLD Boxing Council (WBC) bantamweight gold champion Catherine Phiri has been called on to remain focused and not to allow anything to distract her from school and her boxing career.
The call was made in Lusaka yesterday by Vice-President elect Inonge Wina who described Catherine’s achievement in a man’s dominated sport as a motivation to other girls and women .
She was speaking at a luncheon held at Government House in Lusaka she held in honour of the Catherine.
“I call upon all the women and girls in the country to emulate Catherine by actively engaging in sport. But for women and girls to participate and excel in sport, there is need for increased sponsorship from the corporate world. I call on the corporate world to emulate Oriental Quarries in sponsoring women and girls in sport, ” she said.
She said Catherine was among a few women in sports that had raised the bar so high and dominated the world.
“Attaining the status of a world champion is no easy task. It is a culmination of determination, focus, discipline, dedication and hard work. We expect you to remain focused in your education and sporting career. Don’t let anything distract you from these two,
“It is Government’s policy to promote equal participation of men and women in sport of their choice and to discourage any form of gender discrimination, ” Wina said.
And first lady Esther Lungu announced a K10, 000 gift towards Catherine’s school requirements.
The first lady commended Catherine for combining boxing with education.
” I am proud you for making Zambia proud. Don’t forget these : Honour God in your life and he will provide you with everything you need. Secondly respect your parents. Put education first and you will achieve more. Education will take you anywhere in the world, it will remain with you even after you retire from boxing, ” said Lungu
Catherine thanked the Vice President-elect and the first lady for honoring her with a luncheon.
“I am humbled by this gesture. It truly means a lot and will motivate me to work harder in school, “she said.
Oriental Quarries Boxing Promotions operations manager Christopher Malunga thanked Government for the unwavering support.
Catherine last Saturday defended her title against Gabisile Tshabalala of South Africa in a fight that lasted for 72 seconds at Lusaka’s Government Complex.