BY BEN NWACHUKWU, ABUJA
Newly sworn-in Chairman of Benue State Football Association (BSFA) Barr. Paul Edeh has redeemed a whooping N10 million as take-off grant and Sienna bus pledge to the FA.
Barr. Edeh had announced the donations during his inaugural speech as the FA number one man last weekend in Makurdi, Benue state capital.
The highly celebrated football administrator who is also the President Ratels Sports Development Foundation (RSDF) shortly afterwards led the brand new BSFA board on a courtesy visit to Benue state governor Rev. Fr. Hyacinth Alia.
While at the governor’s office represented by his deputy, Barr. Sam Ode, the state football association’s helmsman informed that after a meeting with the new FA Board, their operational vision and mission in administering football at the grassroots are clear cut.
According to him, “Our Vision for the BSFA is to run an investment driven, self sustaining and impactful football association committed to fair-play, accountability and focus on grassroots football development in pursuit of FIFA, CAF and NFF mandates.
“Our mission as an FA is to effectively oversee and administer football in all ramifications in Benue State in the most transparent and accountable manner in order to eradicate all opportunities for corruption and ensure that the rule of law is respected.
“My administration as the Benue Football Association Chairman and that of the FA Board shall be tailored around support for football development at the grassroots through the various local FAs and affiliate members comprising the Coaches Association, Referees Association, Players Union and the four Leagues.”
Barr. Edeh also re-echoed that his leadership will be anchored around the FIFA Forward project based on three principles – Increased investment in football development, More impact through the achievement of football development objectives and continued oversight to ensure that all funds are used responsibly.
He then used the opportunity to appeal to the state government to mandate all Local Government Areas (LGAs) chairmen to provide a land for at least a mini stadium site in their various localities.
While underscoring the import of sports particularly football in taming insecurity, the new FA Boss requested for provision of working facilities including buses at the LGAs.
Responding on behalf of the governor, the deputy governor Barr. Ode congratulated and commended the new BNSFA board under Barr. Edeh for taking immediate developmental initiatives, while affirming that their emergence was a clear evidence that the delegates have confidence on them.
The deputy governor said soon an executive bill aimed at ensuring that contractors and corporate organisations pay a certain percentage of tax specifically for sports development in the state, will be sent for legislative processes and approval.
He said the new proposed tax inflow for sports bill when passed into law will go a long way in addressing the deficits in sports developments.
He then tasked the FA Board to redouble their efforts in the discharge of their duties.
The BSFA vice chairman Alex Awunah Ioryoosu, and board members – Avungu Jeremiah, Akaasar Marcel, Torluam Terungwa Samuel, Virginia Mbazan Kpindi, Moses Lubem Ukpo, Andiir Solomon Atoo, Francis Ijiga Eche, Godwin Oihi Akpa, Unwanyi Ulegede as well as a handful of conventional media representatives were part of the visit.