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Namibian football in quandary

Namibian football in quandary

Zorena Jantze

 

LOCAL sports consultant Olsen Kahiriri on Friday alongside a crowd of about 50 individuals held a peaceful demonstration at the Zoo Park in the heart of the capital, where they intended to hand over a petition to world football governing body FIFA officials, advocating for better appearance fees for football players in the country.

 

In addition, Kahiriri called for the firing of Franco Cosmos, the secretary-general of the Namibia Football Association (NFA).

 

In the petition, Kahiriri argued that there was a conflict of interest in the appointment of Cosmos as SG of the NFA.

 

“In 2019, the very same FIFA promised the Namibian nation that our football will be fixed. Hence the appointment of the Normalisation Committee of which had this same characters handpicked by your office under the false pretence that none of them will return or occupy positions as leaders or as executive members of the association. However, it has become clear to us today, that the SG who happens to be the vice-chairperson of the Normalisation Committee came back through the back door. Perplexing enough, he was also in charge of vetting the candidates, he becoming the SG, to us is a sign of conflict of interest in the eyes of the truth,” Kahiriri said.

 

UP IN ARMS: Some scenes from today’s protest. Video: Zorena Jantze

 

In addition, Kahiriri said that the bourgeoisie that was brought in by FIFA recently told the national team players, male and female, that their appearance fee for about four matches is with FIFA.

 

In the petition demands, Kahiriri requested that FIFA appoint a temporary SG from FIFA’s office during this time, who will be working from Windhoek and who is not a Namibian. He further demanded that national team players be paid their appearance fee within 72 hours of receipt of the petition.

 

“We demand a minimum wage to be paid to all football players in this country and an appearance fee for senior national players at N$30 000 irrespective of their gender, and junior team players earn a N$15 000 fee. We demand that all national team players enter into contract with the NFA, the moment they are selected for the national team,” Kahiriri wrote.

 

As no FIFA officials were at Zoo Park, the group indicated they will take the petition to the FIFA office.

 

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