The Gambia Football Federation yesterday gave D1.2 million to league clubs as prize money for winners and runners up in all categories of GFF football competitions.
The ceremony was held at The Gambia Football House in Kanifing and the money, pending payments for the 2016 competitions, was provided by the GFF after the termination of its three-year contract with First Eco Partners earlier in the season.
Men’s league champions Gambia Ports Authority went home with D300, 000; runners up Brikama United and third place finishers Real de Banjul received D150,000 and D100,000 respectively; Brikama United received another D150,000 for winning the Football Federation Cup, and Bombada, runners up in the FF Cup received D100,000.
As well as a position in the first division for the upcoming season, Marimoo FC also got D100, 000 richer for winning the second division in 2016 and Tallinding United, who will join them in the top flight, also received D75, 000.
In the first division of the women’s category, champions Interior FC collected a cheque for D130, 000 in total for winning the league, FF Cup and the runner up in the Super Cup. This is equivalent to D70, 000 for the league, D50, 000 for the FF Cup and D10, 000 for the Super Cup. Abuko United received D40, 000 for finishing as runners up in the FF Cup, while relegated Red Scorpions went home with D20, 000 for winning the Super Cup. Future Bi won the second division and went home with D40, 000.
Delivering a speech ahead of the presentations, Lamin Kabba Bajo, the President of the GFF, first congratulated the teams on winning the prizes and prayed for others to make it next time.
The GFF boss described sponsorship as a major challenge for the Federation. “The Federation terminated its contract with our sponsors and we took it upon ourselves to sponsor the competitions. With or without sponsors is our mandate to organise competitions and award deserving winners,” he affirmed.
Bajo also talked about the GFF’s resolve to decentralise football in the country by incorporating regional teams into the national league. He affirmed that they want to set a legacy by putting in place good structures to develop the national game.
Real de Banjul President William Abraham gave the vote of thanks on behalf of the beneficiary clubs and congratulated the GFF for providing them the money which he said would go a long way towards helping the clubs take care of their operational needs.
He affirmed the clubs’ commitment to work with the Federation in order to get sponsorship for the league.
by Muhammed Lamin Drammeh