Business as usual

The new football league season would start as planned even without sponsors, Rwanda Football Federation has confirmed.

The new football league season would start as planned even without sponsors, Rwanda Football Federation has confirmed.

The 2007/08 season is scheduled to get underway on November 17 and the fixtures have already been prepared, only waiting to be approved and circulated to the concerned parties.

Ferwafa have been in talks for some time now with various companies including MTN Rwanda and pay per view television channel GTV aimed at finding a prospective sponsor for the national football league.

Unfortunately, until to date, all those talks are proving fruitless but the local football ruling body is confident about clinching a deal sooner or later.

And according to the federation chief executive officer, the league should go ahead as planned with or without sponsors.

“That goes without saying; the league must go ahead on November 17 whether we would have gotten a sponsor or not,” Jules Kalisa confirmed.

He went ahead, “The league can and will continue to be played (in this country) with or without sponsors just like it has always been in the past.”

“Football (in Rwanda) has been played for years without sponsors and will continue (to be played) until the we (Ferwafa) get someone willing to work with us. But in the meantime, normal service should continue,” Kalisa added.

Why Bralirwa deal collapsed
Ferwafa under the former administration of Maj. Gen. Caesar Kayizari with his influential right hand man Celestine Musabyimana struck a deal with Bralirwa through their Primus brand to sponsor the national league.

Both parties started with a one-year contract worth Frw40m for the 2004/05 season and after they were both satisfied with the outcome, an extended deal (three years) was signed worth Frw210m (Frw70m per year).

Unfortunately, when the federation leadership changed hands just two months after the deal had been signed, things started to go wrong. 

At the end of year one, for unclear circumstances, the two parties failed to reach an abiding agreement in regards to how best the money could be used to the best interest of all parties concerned.  As Ferwafa boss Brig. Gen. John Bosco revealed recently, the bone of contention was how best the sponsors would enjoy publicity in the local media. He said Bralirwa wanted to receive as much publicity as possible yet as he put, “Yet with the money they were offering, it just couldn’t be possible,” something which led to the deal being called off.

“We told them to give us enough money and we shall deal with the media, they refused and again we suggested (to them), ok, give us what you’re offering but you deal with the media, they also refused that,” Kazura said recently.
Kalisa optimistic

But Kalisa is confident Ferwafa would get a sponsor sooner rather than later but before that can be achieved, business should continue as normal.

He said recently, “We’re talking with a number of companies and among them, one would come on board, I’m optimistic about that.”


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