Friday, June 22, 2012

Gambia Government annul 21 sports bodies, disbands committees

Sports Minister Alieu K. Jammeh
The National Sports Council (NYC), an arm of Gambia’s Sports Ministry on Sunday announce it has  annul the registration of 21 sport associations and subsequently dissolve the executive committees that run them as of June 18. 
The Council said it will consult with the Minister of Youth and Sports, Mr. Alieu K. Jammeh, to identify those it called “credible people” to take charge of the affairs of the affected associations.

It added that it will ensure the associations go to congress and elect new executive committees in due course.

The sports associations whose status as national bodies have been revoked by the NYC include that of the Gambia Draught Association of which the current president of the Gambia National Olympic Committee (GNOC), Mr. Momodou Dibba belong and that of his rival Mr. Abdoulie Bax Touray, the Gambia Cycling Association. 

The others include Gambia Fencing Association, Gambia Rugby Association, Gambia Kung-Fu Association, Gambia Lawn Tennis Association, Gambia Deaf and Hard of Hearing Association, Gambia National Paralympics Association, Gambia National Paralympics Committee, Gambia Volley Ball Association, Gambia Chess Association, Gambia Taekwondo Association, Gambia Weightlifting & Body Building Association, Gambia Table Tennis Association, Gambia Handball Association, Gambia Swimming Association, Gambia Scrabble Association, Gambia Karate Association, Gambia Special Olympics, Gambia Softball Committee, and Combine Service Sports Association.

According to its June 17 media statement, the National sports council said it recognised only 10 sports associations as having fulfill the criteria it set out, when it actually listed nine. These include Gambia Football Association, Gambia Wrestling Association, Gambia Golf Association, Gambia Secondary School Sports Association, Gambia Primary School Sports Association, Gambia Cricket Association, Gambia Sports Journalists Association, National Inter department Association, and Gambia Athletic Association. 

The Council noted that it is empowered by the NSC Act of 2000 to register or deregister national sports associations, and warn that individuals or groups who deal with the deregistered sports associations as doing it at their own risk.

The move followed the disbandment of the executive committee of the Gambia Football Association, GFA three months ago. The Sports Ministry has since vowed to restructure the entire sports fraternity in the Gambia.

On Sunday, the NSC said “It will ensure national sports associations continue to conform to national and international rules, regulations, norms standards and codes of conduct governing the particular sport.”
On June 12, 2012, the Sports Ministry revived the “controversy” surrounding the February 2011 elections of the GNOC, by calling it “a farce” and said it will take appropriate, responsive and responsible action” in due course.

 The sports ministry’s stance followed it examination of findings by a sports tribunal it setup to look into last year’s GNOC elections which saw Mr. Alhagie Momodou Dibba take the reins at the expense of Mr. Abdoulie Bax Touray who boycotted the polls.

The statement did not go down well with the International Olympic Committee (IOC), which fear governmental interference with the affairs of the autonomous body and threaten sanctions, but the ministry said it will not be swayed by the IOC.   

Written by Modou S. Joof


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