GFF explains ban on football in URR

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The latest to make calls for sanity is the Minister of Youth and Sports, Alieu Jammeh, who on Tuesday while inaugurating the new board for the sports council, called on stakeholders in the URR to put their election differences aside and work for the interest of sports.

According to recent reports from the regional capital Basse, football fans there are concerned that the little time left before the summer football moratorium comes into force is being wasted by the continuous bickering among the feuding parties.

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Now, the GFF spokesman and first vice president, Buba ‘Star’ Janneh, has come out to clarify their position on the matter.

According to him the problem started since the time of the Normalization Committee, when Furu Gomez was elected and recognised as the regional football association president.  ”But this election was strongly objected to by several stakeholders in the URR among them prominent established clubs such as Waterman FC  and others all whom claimed they were prevented from participating in that election,” he said.

Janneh explained that when the present GFF leadership came to power, they instituted a task force which comprise of the GFF, Ministry of Sports and the National Sports Council to investigate the impasse and their findings revealed that there indeed were lots of flaws in that election.

”Additionally,  when the GFF senior management team who were touring the country meeting the regional football associations as they prepare for their regional arrived in Basse, the local government authorities there urged them to help solve the impasse there. This led to a meeting presided over by the newly elected regional Sports Committee led by Jarai Jawneh where all parties including Furu Gomez, himself came to a negotiating table at which all agreed that Gomez should accommodate the opposing side and enlarge his executive to co–opt all shades of interest groups there in the interest of unity and football in the region,” Janneh said.

 ”But to our surprise,” Janneh went on, “the URR regional  sports committee and other stakeholders recently received a letter from the National Sports Council stating that both they and the GFF recognised only Furu Gomez and his team as the legitimate football body in the region. Of course this letter was issued without us the GFF getting our copy as we got our copy from the regional sports commitee,” Janneh said,  adding that following this letter from the NSC, Furu Gomez announced he was going ahead to organise the regional league without the opposing clubs and bodies which led to the recent tension in the region.” 

He said the confusion is such that some in the region erroneously alleged that the GFF chose LRR over URR for the site of the Fifa-funded artificial turf because of the disunity in Basse. ”That is most untrue,” he said

The GFF vice president further explained that because of the new tension created by Furu Gomez’s decision to go ahead without the rest, the URR sports committee under the leadership of Jarai Jawneh wrote to the GFF recommending that  plans to stage the league be stopped until things are sorted out.  ”It was on the basis of that recommendation that we at the GFF deem it necessary in the interest of peace to issue a directive for all football to be stopped there until a new understanding is reached between the parties,” Janneh concluded.

 

Author: Lamin Cham

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