The football fraternity in Guyana is slowly approaching the month where clubs in their various associations across the land, seek to be a part of the long anticipated end of the year tournament, the Kashif and Shanghai Tournament. What is the situation that is recurring, that appears to be causing an issue in the football realm? It is the repeat of the end-of-year Banks DIH sponsored tournament promoted by the Guyana Football Association (GFA) that has undoubtedly taken the playing of the sport to another level. One of the problems, however, is not the promotion of tournaments that will positively aid the development of football, but the fact that this one is being promoted by the GFA, an association which is in a debacle with the Guyana Football Federation (GFF) and in which the court is involved.
Another issue arising from these two proposed tournaments is the impact they are having on other associations which have clubs that are starved but passionate to play the sport. I refer specifically to the Upper Demerara Football Association (UDFA) of which I’m an executive member. My independent view is that for clubs in this association, the primary concern is the playing of the sport. They aren’t concerned with who the promoters are, because their love of the game is what makes them want to play. The executives of the UDFA made strong efforts in accordance with a directive from the GFF to get our clubs in order so that the association would be given its voting rights. After doing as we were advised to do by the GFF, which is our parent body, we were reliably informed that the association is not in a position to be given that right. The dilemma this association is facing at this juncture, besides not being given its right to vote, is the desire of its clubs to play in the upcoming tournament/s. Most of the clubs in this association are aware of the GFF‘s position with respect to clubs playing in tournaments which aren’t sanctioned by the federation.
These proposed sanctions sadly, however, are infringing on the clubs‘ desire to play the game of football. It is because of this that the UDFA is faced with a situation that will certainly affect its current standing of being well-supported by its affiliated clubs.
I am persuaded that this conundrum involving the GFF and GFA is one that can easily be solved. My proposition is to provide the two most vibrant associations, the GFA and UDFA which have provided the most national players, with their voting rights. Secondly, the GFA should withdraw the court case, and the administration of the GFF should do the responsible thing and propose a date for its national election, so that all associations can contribute to the leadership that will put the sport of football first.