By Franklin Wilson
Offering words of encouragement on behalf of FIFA President Gianni Infantino, FIFA Director of Member Associations & Development for Africa and the Caribbean, Mr. Véron Mosengo-Omba yesterday met with members of the core in Guyana at end of a brief two day visit to Guyana, his first of many.
Mosengo-Omba noted that they are very supportive of the strides that Guyana has been making under Forde while stating that much would be achieved given the new and stringent policy measures that FIFA has been implementing especially when it comes to the Forward Programme formerly the Goal Project.
The FIFA official informed that the GFF has submitted all the documents required and the ball is now in FIFA’s half as they conduct final verification of same before making an announcement as regards commencement date.
Sharing the Head Table at yesterday’s Press Conference were GFF President Wayne Forde along with first and second Vice President’s Ret. Brigadier Bruce Lovell and Rawleston Adams.
Forde in opening remarks stated that Mosengo-Omba has been very supportive of the federation’s developmental initiatives and they are happy with his presence here.
”There are quite a few items on our developmental agenda going forward from 2017 into 2018 and then to 2019 and much of the work that we have to do we have to do it through the office of FIFA’s development.”
Forde noted that the Caribbean and Africa which falls under Mosengo-Omba’s purview are two of the most exciting parts of the world in terms of football development.
The Forward Project which will see the GFF constructing its own football facility inclusive of an all weather field, dormitories and offices is anticipated to get underway shortly.
Mosengo-Omba noted that FIFA is in a transitional period and it will take some time to get the machinery up and running fully. “GFF, they have done their job and it’s us now, it will be delivered soon.”
Infrastructure and youth development will be the focus of the federation in this and the coming years, Forde reminded.
”We are ultimately trying to lay a lasting foundation for football development but the priority is of course to get a home for football as you are all aware we have to rent various venues to run our programmes. The Providence facility will be the home for not just the GFF but for the entire football family.” Greenfield has won the contract to execute works.
After achieving the goal of a home for football, Forde said they will then look at other areas to develop and Linden would be first on the agenda.
”The ultimate goal is to have one high quality playing venue in each association. What we did early last year we had our members have a statutory meeting where the minutes and the recommendations for the venue that they want to have invested in was sent to the executive committee and we have those on record.”
Surfaces would be developed along with stands and lights. The GFF head shared that the total investment that the federation would have access to in a calendar year is USD$750,000.
”We are exploring partnership with the government of Guyana and far it’s been very positive, we’ve just wrapped up a very good meeting with Minister Harmon. The idea is to have a partnership between the GFF, FIFA and the Government in the development of these facilities. The federation by itself and FIFA alone would not be able to do the tremendous work that is required to bring these facilities up to standard.”
Investment would also be need according to Forde, to access talent that is available in many of the hinterland regions as well as Berbice among other areas. The GFF he said would also be aiming to expand the pool of Youth Development Officers and Youth Development coaches that have been employed by the federation to service the Scotiabank Academy Training Centers.
Forde also informed that the GFF would be making moves to purchase its own transportation as they are too dependent on suppliers.
”We’re going to be tooling ourselves with buses and vehicles, we need to have some level of control over how we organise and execute our functions as a federation.”
Mosengo-Omba once again noted that FIFA would be very supportive of such initiatives.
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