Professionalizing football management should be high on the agenda of the newly elected Ferwafa executive committee.
Brigadier General Jean Bosco Kazura has been mandated to lead the national football for another four years but the main issue that Kazura and a few straight heads at the federation are facing is mediocrity mainly at the club level which has also affected the federation.
The league not having a main bankroller for the last three years speaks volumes when the federation has a whole office in charge of marketing and promotion.
Running the league on a shoe-string budget is one thing that Kazura’s management should be hailed for. Running the league in the past three years has been a miracle.
Depending on gate collections shows that the marketing chief at the federation has been in a comfort zone. For a corporation to sink its money into football it needs to be shown value. Sponsorship shouldn’t be taken as charity.
And this cause has not been helped by the monopolist tendencies that have characterized the most of Rwanda’s big businesses.
Rwanda’s football has reached a point where its full potential needs to be tapped. This is happening at the time when the entire economy is registering positive growth prospects. With economic growth various companies mostly foreign based with huge budgets for marketing have set up operations in Rwanda.
These companies acknowledge the value that football has on marketing. East Africa has seen a massive drop in attendances with only as few as 100 fans even less attending matches in 30,000-seater national stadiums across the region.
One main factor to blame is the growing popularity of foreign leagues relayed via satellite. The popularity of the English premiership, French, Italian and Spanish leagues has affected the interest in local football and is likely to bury the local game if the stakeholders don’t do something.
However, Rwanda’s football seems to be sailing astray of some of the troubles that have faced its neighbors.
Though there is the English league storm that has swept through the whole country, Rwandans still take pride in the fact that that national football league is still a hot topic on the streets across the country.
Teams still have fans following them for their up country engagements and though attendance figures show a different picture for the so called small clubs there is hope for the big ones.
When Rayon takes on APR, the match can be the talk of town for weeks.
A beneficial setting to all parties has to be created for private companies to bankroll teams. Branding and marketing of the league has to be put in place for every club to attract its own sponsorship.
Clubs have to take the initiative of attracting investors into the league, as it’s the only way that will create competition in the national league.