The president accompanied by executive committee member, Abukar Islaw Hassan, who doubles as the deputy head for regional development, toured several cities including Galkayo and the region’s capital Dhuusamareeb, where they visited several football facilities and met with government officials, local football office bearers and members of the community.
The official working visit to the region by SFF’s top delegation began on Tuesday October 13, in the city of Galkayo some 750 kilometres north of Mogadishu, where the president toured Abdullahi Isse Stadium and met with local football administrators and community leaders.
During his stay in Galkayo, the president sat with regional football administrators and local community in the city to listen to their needs. The region’s authorities requested the president to help them get an artificial turf for Abdullahi Isse Stadium. On behalf of the SFF president Abdiqani Said Arab, pledged that Somali Football Federation will financially contribute to the project.
The president encouraged the regional football authorities to organize youth competitions through schools, while the SFF will provide the necessary equipment, financial support and as well as will continue to train the regional State’s football administrators, referees and coaches.
The president’s delegation then travelled to the Capital of Gal-Mudug State where they spent two more days and met with the regional minister for youth and sports, Hussein Abdulle Hassan and his director general, Omar Abdi Mohamed, to discuss with them on issues relating to the development of football in the state and how the regional government can play its role in promoting the game.
During the meeting, SFF president asked the regional government to include funding for football in its annual budget from next year. "Without financial support from government, it is hard to reach the level we want, so I would like the government of Gal-Mudug State to set up an annual budget for the promotion of football” The president told the regional minister for youth and sports, Hussein Abdulle Hassan, who welcomed the president’s proposal.
The president commended the regional state for constructing a football stadium with artificial turf in Dhusuamareeb and pledged that the SFF will cover the other needs they have such as providing them with enough football equipment, capacity building trainings and workshops for football office bearers, coaches and referees, so that the region will be capable of organising its events. A football match was organized for two local football teams as a welcome game for the president’s delegation.
A press statement by the SFF on Friday reads "On behalf of the SFF, president Abdiqani Said Arab, pledged that the SFF will launch a well-equipped headquarters for the regional football association based in the State’s capital Dhuusamareeb.
"SFF is committed to taking the game to every tiny village in the country” the president declared by emphasising that governmental financial support is absolutely necessary for the game’s development.
The president encouraged the regional authorities to give young people the opportunity to get involved in the game through schools, adding that the SFF is committed to giving more priority to football in schools across the country. He said that promoting football in schools is vital.
"In 2021, we are planning to implement more football for schools programmes in all regions in the country, because we want to reach more children and youths than we did in the past” SFF president Abdiqani Said Arab, said in a statement on Friday as he returned to Mogadishu from his week-long working visit to the federal member States of Puntland and Gal-Mudug.
The president’s delegation returned to Mogadisu on Friday morning and is scheduled to tour other federal member states including Jubbaland and South West in the next few weeks.
Somali Football Federation Media Department