ARUA. Onduparaka Football Club (FC) has signed a one-year sponsorship deal with Arua bound Zawadi Bus services.

The partnership that will run from October 17, 2019, to October 17, 2020, was formerly reached at on Friday at Heritage courts hotel in Arua town.

In the pact, the bus company will transport Onduparaka FC players and officials for all their away games.

Speaking during the function, Adams Lematia, the Onduparaka FC spokesperson said the sponsorship is timely considering that transportation has been a key challenge for the club with each away game costing about shs2.4m including the return trip.

“Onduparaka FC spends an estimated shs67.2m on transport alone per season. Through this partnership, the club will be relieved of this heavy financial burden and the travelling team will be accorded comfort by a company that we know offers the best customer centred transportation services”, Lematia said.

Ms Mercy Munduru, the Onduparaka FC head of marketing said the partnership means a lot to them as a club, adding that it is the very first time that they are having the privilege of partnering with a local business entity.

“Transport has been one of the biggest cost to the club and yet it is a necessity because we have to honour our fixtures away from home. As you know, the club has been in the process of mobilizing funds for a bus but we couldn’t afford to have the bus in place overnight”, Munduru said.

“We have been working around the clock to see that we partner to relieve the club of some of the financial burdens associated with a club that travels the longest distance in the league, so our partnership with Zawadi is timely and it is very necessary,” Munduru added.

Meanwhile Benjamin Nyakuni, the club chairman commended Zawadi services for the partnership, saying it has always not been easy for the club when it comes to transport.

“We have a lot of transport companies in West Nile but Zawadi is the first company which has welcomed Onduparaka with open hands”, Nyakuni said.

fan 18 10 19A fan of Onduparaka FC celebrates the deal at Green Light stadium on Friday

He promised to engage Zawadi in other partnerships including future plans of developing the Green Light stadium.

But in his speech, Mr Simon Amajuru, the managing director Zawadi bus services observed that it is not Zawadi sponsoring Onduparaka instead it is the club fans who buy travel tickets from the bus company.

“If you buy a ticket of Zawadi bus, you are sponsoring Onduparaka FC because it is the money that we, in turn, use to cover the players’ travel bills”, Amajuru said.

He urged the club management to desist from using players as tools of work but build them up beyond playing football so as to remain responsible people in the near future.

Zawadi bus services are the third main sponsor of Onduparaka FC after Betway and MTN Uganda which has renewed its contract with the club.

 officials 18 10 19Onduparaka FC, Zawadi bus officials and journalists pose for a group photo shortly after the signing of the agreement on Friday