The Social Security and Housing Finance Corporation (SSHFC) on Friday 5th January 2023 gave a cheque of two million dalasis to the National Coordinating Committee of this year’s Africa Cup of Nations.
This comes as the senior national team (Scorpions) and the Gambia Football Federation intensify preparations to ensure the country’s successful participation in the upcoming continental showpiece.
Speaking at a brief handingover ceremony at the SSHFC head office in Banjul, Mr. Saloum Malang, the corporation’s Managing Director, said the move underlines not just their support to Gambian sports but national development as a whole.
“I am in this not just as Social Security but as a Gambian. If we have five or ten Ronaldos in this country, we wouldn’t need gold and diamond. Football has become a huge investment that is changing lives. That is why we are committing a good chunk of our corporate social responsibility into this cause,” MD Malang enthused.
The SSHFC boss recalled that his institution recently supported the Gambia U-15 team that participated in the Norway Cup held in Oslo under the tutelage of former national team player Tijan Jaiteh by facilitating their journey to and from Dakar through the GTSC bus service.
Mr. Malang maintained that The Gambia’s back-to-back participation in the continental premier football tournament is a momentum that should be maintained.
Receiving the two-million-dalasi cheque on behalf of the Minister of Youth and Sports, the President of Gambia Football Federation, Lamin Kaba Bajo, expressed profound gratitude and appreciation to Social Security and Housing Finance Corporation for its invaluable support to the young people of The Gambia.
“We recognise the macroeconomic situation of the country and being the end of year, this represents a lot of money. We can only say thank you. We want to assure SSHFC that this contribution will be put to good use. We at GFF will not relent to develop all aspects of football, especially at the national team level.”
Mr. Bajo said football now goes beyond leisure and physical fitness, saying investing in youth and sports means contributing to the development of the country’s critical mass. The GFF president said such a gesture by public sector operators like Social Security will help consolidate the ongoing strides taking shape in Gambian football. He posited that football has what it takes to divert the attention of Gambian youth from venturing into irregular migration.
The Africa Cup of Nations will be held in Ivory Coast from 13th January to 11th February 2024 with The Gambia set to play their first match against Senegal on Monday 15th January 2024.

Source: The Standard

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