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Football field for URR, funding cuts for schools football and regularisation of regional leagues

The Gambia Football Federation on Monday completed a tour of the country consulting stakeholders on its programme of the coming four years, 2023 -2026.

At North Bank Region where the delegation also attended the regional league final, President Lamin Kabba Bajo re-echoed his executive’s gratitude to the NBR football family for re-electing his team.

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The GFF boss said the tour was important as it provided an opportunity for consultations among stakeholders in developing the strategic framework 2023-2026 blueprint to steer the affairs of football for the next four years.

He called on the stakeholders to unite and combine efforts to ensure another successful tenure in office.

Mr Bajo enumerated many successes gained by his administration among them capacity building of technicians including coaches, referees, medics and administrators. He noted that the success of the national teams, most notably the senior national men’s team is the collaborative effort of the general stakeholders under the strategic approach of his leadership.

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First Vice President Bakary Jammeh who is also the chairman of the GFF finance committee dilated at length on the new Fifa Forward 3.0 program and the GFF’s Strategic Framework 2023-2026.

He gave a brief rundown of key areas of the framework and assured the stakeholders of the football leadership’s firm stand to develop Gambian football especially in the new four -year period coming.

The second vice-president and head of competitions Ebou Faye said the third division regional leagues would be regularised across the country. “Playing your third division league outside the GFF calendar will no longer be accepted and playing a tournament as a league will also not be accepted”, he told the regional football leaders.

The GFF Technical Director Sang Ndong also underscored that Regional Football Associations should be steadfast in their engagements and prioritise capacity building.  The North Bank Regional Football Association president Abu Khan, his deputy Ebrima Ceesay and Modou Njie of Schools Football Association all highlighted numerous challenges faced by the region, notably the lack of a standard football pitch, insufficient subventions, lack of capacity building programs and GFF’s lack of support for the regional school football tournament in the region.

Responding to these concerns Kabba Bajo and Bakary Jammeh said the GFF will continue to work on addressing the problem of a standard playing pitch in the region noting that the region was one of the first that the GFF requested support for from its bilateral partners, the Qatari Football Federation. They said the rest of the concerns raised are addressed in the strategic framework 2023-2026.

On school football, Mr Ebou Faye said “the GFF has cut down funding on some projects because of over spending in last year’s edition with the GFF solely and exclusively funding the national, regional and continental programme of school football, from Cape Verde to South Africa.

However, he assured the stakeholders that the national schools football finals will be sponsored by the GFF. Earlier the GFF leadership unveiled a mini stadium project inWuli.

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