Well it didn’t come as a surprise to me when I read on line that the SLFA congress has been postponed till mid July because of audited financial statements.
In 2005, I was present in his mid-term congress at Kingtom, there was no financial report, and it was held because it was not an elective congress. Now because it is an elective congress, the report is needed, that is true and I support, but before announcing the date for congress they should have taken the Leone Stars participation into account and the estimated time the auditors would take to complete their work, if the executive is a responsible one.
Well as far as I am concerned, it is a ploy hatched by the executive especially Alhaji Alim Sesay to disorganize the opposing camp and Provincial delegates who are already in town.
Most of the members of this current executive are crooks that will not stop at nothing to retain their position because of the financial gains.
Justice Tolla Thompson who thought Alim Sesay was a trusted pal, ended up almost in disgrace when he showed him his true colours.
In the next two weeks, they are going to device some new tactics that will continue to keep them in power. The only difference between this group of executive members and Robert Mugabe is they can’t use force, but will apply the other 99 tactics to keep themselves in power, coupled with the poverty stricken football officials.
Reading the manifestos of both candidates, I was able to see some encouraging signs from Foday Bangso’s, because he was able to bring out financial, administrative and technical structures for all to understand the way forward of football in the 21st century.
Nahim Kadi’s manifesto is a farce as he was explaining about football being played all over the country, seed money, buses and clubs in international competition.
What is the technical and financial benefit that was realized from playing football all over the country to date? How can two thousand dollars change a club status for a year given as seed money? CAF gave more than five countries buses including Sierra Leone, Mozambique and Lesotho as their usual handouts every year to their members. What did all these teams profit in playing in CAF competitions with the present condition of football in the country?
Nahim is shortsighted and doesn’t understand how profitable and successful football is run in the 21st century.
I want Nahim to understand that football is a very rich industry that can even provide thousands of foreign currencies to the government in the form of taxes.
The ideology of Nahim and co. is very primitive and can’t be tolerated in the 21st century when football has become so scientific.
The budget of Al Ahly of Egypt is almost 50% of Sierra Leone’s annual budget, what Al Ahly spends a month is almost the $250,000 SLFA receives from FIFA.
I am using the most successful club side in Africa as an example to show how football has grown. Al Ahly has about 10 players that earn more about $7,000 a month as salary with their foreign coach being paid $12,000 a month.
I think if Nahim was au fait with the modern day football he would have presented a manifesto that would change the course of the game.
Tolla Thompson’s dream was for the FA to get an office and to build an academy,
Nahim’s dream would have been to utilize the academy to its fullest and make sure the FA has another stadium.
But dreaming of football playing all over the country without the structures in place is as good as nothing. Giving out footballs and kits is for a month and everything is over. Seed money given to clubs cannot even purchase equipment for a squad of 20 players let alone run the club for the whole season.
What we are looking for is someone that would be able to revolutionize the game and make it profitable and successful. This can be done by restructuring the clubs to make them viable by bringing football experts from our Meridien partners in Europe Scotland or by asking DFID or the British Embassy to help us.
Supporters are very important to these clubs and when a club is able to utilize its supporter’s base, then they will be able to generate enough money on a regular basis.
If for example Blackpool has about 5,000 registered supporters contributing to the clubs finances monthly, and buying the clubs products, don’t you think that when Blackpool is searching for sponsorship deals, they would be negotiating from a position of strength?
It is always interesting for sports loving fans to involve in research to know how clubs are making money. A club like Asec Abidjan is making hundreds of thousands of dollars every year from sponsorship deals in and out of Ivory Coast, their supporters, merchandising, sale of quality players and gate takings.
Many of these sports manufacturing companies are looking for new grounds to invest, but they can’t invest in Sierra Leone when the clubs cannot even boast of a bank account.
Unless the candidates aspiring for this top position think of football as a successful and profitable sports before the game will progress.
As for Victor Lewis of the Spectator, I am not surprised to see him pitching tents with Nahim, it’s either of two things; maybe he is broke after wasting millions of Leones in last year’s elections or maybe he is shortsighted and a failure.
With Nahim, he will be able to recoup lost money spent on last year’s elections. He looks like someone who is associated with failure. The earlier he concentrates on his business and forget about these public positions, the better it will be for him.
By Austin Thomas in China