Kindly allow me space in your widely read newspaper to congratulate The Gambia Football Association (GFA) for their success to secure sponsorship for the annual supper Nawetan football championship from baby Muhammed Yahya Jammeh. This is the beginning of a successful story that could improve football in the country.
According to information gathered during my two weeks holidays in The Gambia from the 5th to 19th December, many people suggested that GFA needs to expand the super Nawetan championship across the country to make the tournament more interesting and challenging. It is suggested that all major Nawetan zones in the country could take part in the tournament, which will bring much interest to fans and motivate more support.
Therefore popular zones like Brufut, Essau, Kerrmama, Faraba, Sibanor, Bwiam, Kalagi, Soma, Farafenni, Kaur, Brikamaba, Bansang, Basse, Wuli Sutukoba just to name a few are some of the most common places were Nawetan could be organise including the permanent zones selected by GFA. It is no doubt the tournament would be more interesting and many more unknown young talented players would be discovered each year.
Though it would cost GFA extra funds and logistics to organise bigger super Nawetan tournament, I am of the view that few Gambian philanthropists and well wishers of football in the country can sponsor the event. However, GFA would need to educate various football committees on strategic efforts to raise funds at the grassroots level to support their clubs. For example Banjul football club could be sponsored by Gambia Ports Authority, S/K West by Senegambia Hotel, Brufut by Sheraton Hotel, Basse by the Area Council etc.
Furthermore, I would like to encourage GFA, to create special task force committee that would concentrate organising the annual super Nawetan football championship. The committee shall have at least two members of GFA and representatives from the respective zones. The committee shall report to GFA executive about their progress and constrains.
To this end, GFA will not stretch its muscles on their efforts marinating standard in Gambian football, rather GFA shall have broad based structure to support grassroots football development and produce more young Gambia players for good. Please take note, all district sport committees across the country need to be put in place by divisional sports committees and function effectively.
I wish to congratulate Gunjur for their unbeaten records up to the semi finals, and thank baby Muhammed Yahya Jammeh for this noble support.