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The Gambia Football Federation (GFF) has advised its members not to take part in a training programme planned by the Team Restore Confidence without its approval or consultation. The team Restore Confidence (TRC) was the opposition group led by Sadibou Kamaso which lost last national football elections. The group is reported to have announced a planned capacity building programme for clubs.

Following GFF warning to its members, TRC responded by criticising Football House for trying to stop what they could not do for their members.

The two sides’ statements are reproduced below:

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It has come to the attention of The Gambia Football Federation (GFF) that a group that calls themselves Team Restore Confidence plan to organise trainings for GFF member clubs without the prior notification or approval of the GFF. For the purpose of clarity, the membership of the GFF comprises of first & second division clubs, male and female, the seven regional football associations, the five allied associations and by extension all football academies which are registered with the Regional Football Associations.

Thus, the Team Restore Confidence does not belong to the GFF and does not have any legal or technical competence to carry out any form of training for any member of the GFF. Any individual or group, that is organising any event for our members, must channel it through the Federation which is the only body responsible for national football administration in The Gambia. Unless when the federation delegates such responsibilities to a competent body or individual, any act to the contrary will be considered illegal and will not be tolerated.

For ease of reference, the attention of members are hereby drawn to the relevant provisions of the GFF Constitution as quoted below:

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Article 14.1 of the GFF Constitution states, unequivocally: Every Member of the GFF has an obligation:

a)         To comply fully with the Statutes, regulations, directives and decisions of FIFA, CAF & GFF at all times to ensure that these are also respected by its members.

b)         To be loyal to the GFF, meaning, in particular, that the member must refrain from any actions contrary to the interests of the GFF;

In light of the above, the GFF is advising its members not to be associated in any way or take part in any training or activity organised by any group or individual, unless, otherwise, sanctioned by the GFF. Any member, without exception, that fails to adhere to this directive, will face punitive measures from the GFF as dictated by our Constitution.

Team Restore Confidence TRC leader Sadibou Kamaso’s reaction:

I fervently belief that The Gambia Football Federation should focus more on the promotion and development of football than to engage in political bigotry.

β€œTo be loyal to GFF, meaning in particular that the member must refrain from any actions contrary to the interests of GFF”. This is where whoever sanctioned this missive wants to hang on and am sorry to say but it is now clear that their interest which was not what the constitution talked about is for people not to have capacity.

How in the world is having a private workshop for Club General Secretaries against the GFF’s interest? Well, yes because they do not want them to understand their roles so they can continue to be tossed around.

Instead of fulfilling their obligation to clubs, they will still go ahead and deprive them of something that will benefit clubs. Imagine how much clubs are losing from Training, Compensation and Solidarity payments just because they do not understand them?

Imagine clubs not knowing that they should always protest first before an appeal after a match and the procedure involved to do this?

Imagine Club Secretaries not knowing that record keeping is one part of their job that could earn them a lot of resources when making claims?

Instead of paying clubs their prize monies, the GFF is here trying to deprive clubs of a capacity building they have not been able to provide for them.

So, it’s normal for the GFF not to fulfill its obligation to its members, but they can deprive members from engaging in capacity building programmes.

So, it is now wrong for a medical practitioner to say he wants to help build capacities of physios?

Has the government of The Gambia ever stopped philanthropists from offering free training here to anyone?

TRC is not charging anyone for this. It’s an open one so whoever wants to come in is free to attend”.

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