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Government Allocated GMD 171Miliion for AFCON

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Bakary Badjie, Minister of Youth and Sports

By Landing Ceesay

The Minister of Youth and Sports, Honourable Bakary Y. Badjie, revealed today that the Gambia’s Government, under the leadership of President Adama Barrow, has allocated One hundred and Seventy-One million Dalasis (D171,000,000.00) to support the country’s participation in the upcoming AFCON in Ivory Coast.

In an official statement posted on the Ministry of Youth and Sports Facebook page, it was disclosed that the Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs has already disbursed 150 million Dalasis on behalf of the government.

“Honourable Bakary Y. Badjie, Minister of Youth and Sports, announced this evening that the Government of the Gambia, led by H.E President Adama Barrow, has contributed One hundred and Seventy-One million Dalasis (D171,000,000.00) towards AFCON participation in Ivory Coast. “He highlighted that the government has already released 150 million through the Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs.”

Earlier in the day, the Vice President of the Republic, Mr. Mohamed B.S. Jallow, presented the national flag to the team in a ceremony held at the Statehouse.

However, in a related development, the national football team, the Scorpions, decided not to attend their scheduled open training session at the Independence Stadium this evening, citing unpaid bonuses as the reason. Coach Tom Sanfiet and his technical team were present at the stadium, but the players opted to remain at the hotel, refusing to join the training session.

During a press briefing, Coach Sanfiet acknowledged the players’ absence, linking it to financial concerns. He refrained from providing specific details on the bonus issue, stating that he lacked the authority to delve into remuneration matters. Coach Sanfiet revealed that he received a call from the team captain before the practice, notifying him of the players’ decision not to participate. While unable to elaborate, he expressed certainty that the underlying cause revolves around monetary concerns.

There are reports suggesting that the players may refuse to proceed with their planned journey to Ivory Coast tomorrow, although the accuracy of this information is still awaiting confirmation. 

As of press time, there has been no official comment from the Gambia Football Federation and the Ministry of Youth and Sports.

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