Namibia U-17 girls withdraw from Cosafa

27 Aug 2019 14:10pm
WINDHOEK, 27 AUG (NAMPA) – Namibia will not be sending a team to the inaugural 2019 Women’s Under-17 Council of Southern Africa Football Associations (Cosafa) Championship slated for Mauritius between 20 and 29 September this year.
Speaking to Nampa on Tuesday, the general manager of the Women’s Desk at the Namibia Football Association (NFA), Jacqui Shipanga, said the team will not be participating in the tournament due to a lack of funds.
“The players were already in camp after having been attending training the past three weeks. Last week, we were informed by the NFA’s International Federation of Association Football (FIFA) Normalisation Committee (NC) that there are no funds. It is devastating news but it is beyond our power,” she explained.
She said they had 50 girls in camp from the regions with the aim of selecting the best team, adding that they had submitted all the proposals to the NC on time.
“Had we known that the funds would not be enough, we could have at least sacrificed the U-20s and sent the U-17s as they are the pinnacle of our developmental project. We even went as far as creating a team of U-17s that are participating in the Skorpion Zinc Women’s Super League as a way of keeping the girls fit,” she said.
Shipanga said their efforts seem to be in vain, especially after convincing Fifa to help them build the Girls’ Centre, which caters for the development of the women’s game.
Franco Cosmos, the deputy chairperson of the NC, confirmed that the lack of funds is the reason for Namibia’s withdrawal from the tournament.
“We had three teams participating in the various Cosafa tournaments this year and Government has not supported us on that front. We may have to sacrifice the men’s team as well if we do not get any funds,” Cosmos explained.
When quizzed about the sponsorship from Skorpion Zinc to the national U-17 boys, Cosmos said they will engage the NC soon to try and secure the money on time.
He added that they are working on an audited report that they will send to FIFA and secure funding.
Cosmos however said the current financial situation will not affect the senior men’s national team, the Brave Warriors, who will be participating at the FIFA World Cup preliminary round against Eritrea over two legs, and the 2020 African Nations Championship against Madagascar in September.