The Kashif & Shanghai Organisation is expected to meet with representatives of Alpha United and Pele FC again in two weeks for an amicable solution to the matter of the long overdue Plus One kits from the 21st K&S Football tournament last December.
Yesterday co-director of the K&S Organisation Kashif Muhammad said that they met representatives of the clubs recently but would not be disclosing what transpired at the meeting until a later date.
Yesterday Odinga Lumumba, at a press briefing at the Water Chris Hotel, said that the meeting with the K&SO was a positive one and he too will not be giving too much insight into what was discussed.
He also pointed out that if by the end of the two-week period something tangible is not forthcoming then he would have to take alternative action.
“We had a recent discussion and they promised to get back to us within two weeks with something concrete. At least the conversation was positive so we anticipate that by next week…They (K&SO) have put a proposal to us and they say that they gonna need another week to cement that proposal.
“I don’t want to disclose that proposal at this time but it is a proposal we can live with. If by the end of this week or next week they come through with the proposal I will announce it, if not I will take further action. I know that I have been saying this for a long time but for the sake of football and for the sake of life I have been reasonable; it’s been eight months and they ask for some more time and I think that is reasonable,” Lumumba stated.
Cary Jacques, according to Lumumba, represented Pele FC. Lumumba also “anticipates and hopes” that the matter is resolved before the next K&S tournament in December “for the sake of Kashif and Shanghai [Aubrey Major] and for the sake of football.”
The K&SO has come under fire in recent weeks from Lumumba, president of Alpha ‘The Hammer’ United, Guyana’s number one club, over the non-receipt of the promised kits from the Plus One deal brokered last November by the organisers of the football tournament.
It was a deal that was supposed to supplement the prize money offered by the organization at its annual end of year football tournament. However, the Kashif and Shanghai Organisation has to date been unable to have the Plus One Company honour its promise of providing football kits to the winners which had resulted in Lumumba threatening to take the organisation to court over the matter.
In last year’s deal it was agreed that the first place team will receive $5M in kit sponsorship over a two-year period to supplement the $2M cash prize while kits for second, third and fourth place finishers were to the tune of $2M, $200,000 and $50,000 respectively. The K&SO has stated on a few occasions that they had been in contact with the Plus One representatives, via email, for the past nine months but to date the company has not honoured its commitments.
Meanwhile, Lumumba also announced that the Guyana Football Federation (GFF) has granted him the green light to go about setting up the long-awaited professional league.
According to Lumumba he has been given nine months to complete his proposal but he has up to next month-end to produce figures so that the second round of talks can be held with the executive of the local governing body.
After these talks, according to Lumumba, he will be seeking prospective partners, both privately, individually and support from government.
“The GFF has officially written me and asked me to do this (set up a pro league) and permitting me to do this and I am moving forward. I was written to by Assistant General Secretary George Rutherford.
“The first aspect will be to put the budget together, a cost and have dialogue with those who are interested. It can’t just be Lumumba and his team, it has to have seven other teams minimum so we have to look at other potential stakeholders and also look at the government because in Trinidad they get a subvention from the government annually and so we will have to look at our government,” Lumumba explained.
He said further that he has to look at existing facilities and the level of repairs that would be required when the league bears fruit. He named GFC, Blairmont, Bartica, Guyana National Stadium, Mackenzie Sports Club, Alpha Ground, GDF, Eve Leary and the international track when it is completed by the government as possible facilities.
“…but before we can get these places and individuals we have to get a cost and what roles the government can play.”
Lumumba also pointed out that money will be coming out of his pocket, especially since it has always been a dream of his to see a professional football league in Guyana.
“When you believe in an idea you have to spend some money. I believe in the idea and if it is an investment I will do it, once it doesn’t break me or destroy me. I can get some other persons involved who are interested so we can move forward with this project,” Lumumba declared.