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As 2019/2020 County Meet In Sight: -MYS Yet To Provide Financial Report

In November 2018, the Ministry of Youth and Sports, organizers of the National County Sports Meet, along with lead sponsor, Orange GSM Liberia, promised to make the 2018 edition of the competition an extraordinary event, one that will be remembered by Liberians.
At a joint press conference held at the Samuel Kanyon Doe Sports Complex, the Chief Executive officer of Orange Liberia, Mamadou Coulibaly told the public that his company was proud to be the official sponsor of the country’s biggest sporting festival, and that his company remains committed to supporting football in Liberia.
Besides, Orange GSM Liberia, the last edition of the competition attracted several other sponsorship packages as it was recorded as one of the most funded sports festivity in decades. The Ministry through according to sources rallied the business county and other local partners to assist in promoting the financial ambiance of Liberia’s biggest sports gathering. With no hesitation, commercial institutions including the banking sector heeded to the call of the MYS as it sought to improve the status of the NCSM.
As part of Government’s contribution, the ministry also received its regular County Meet allotment, which accordingly was to be used for successfully holding the competition. Though MYS complained that the amount in question was not sufficient to shoulder the entire financial burden of the competition, it promised to reach-out to private businesses and other partners to solicit additional funding, something which they did, and they attracted extra monetary support that later buttressed the financial strength of the organizers.
In January 2019, the Liberian Bank for Development and Investment (LBDI) presented a cash award last year’s national county meet winners through the sharing of LD$1.2 million. The National County Sports Meet ended on Sunday, January 13, 2019, at the Samuel K. Doe Sports Complex in Paynesville, outside Monrovia with Bomi emerging as winner in the Football category.
John B. S. Davies, President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Liberian Bank for Development and Investment (LBDI), at the presentation ceremony at the bank’s headquarters in Monrovia, lauded the organizers, the Ministry of Youth and Sports (MYS), and the various winners of the competitions for their commitment that ensured that the county meet was a success.
During the ceremony, Roelyn M. Tokeh, Fiscal Affairs Superintendent of Bomi County, received L$500,000, while J. Daniel Willie, Grand Bassa County Assistant Superintendent for Fiscal Affairs, received L$250,000 as winners of the kickball tournament.
Emmanuel M. Goll, City Mayor of Margibi County received L$300,000 as winners of the 2nd place in football and 2nd in kickball respectively, while Gonpa O. Dahn, Comptroller of Nimba County received L$50,000 for the 3rd place in kickball. Grand Gedeh received L$100,000 for taking 3rd place in the football category. The competition was regarded as one of the most colorful NCSM since the emergence of the competition in 1956. Petro Trade and other members of the business community was highly appreciated by the Ministry of Youth and Sports for the unflinching financial contribution and support towards the successful holding of the County Meet.
Given the gigantic financial attraction and how supporters overwhelmingly attended Counties’ matches, the Ministry of Youth and Sports (MYS) is yet to produce a single line informing the public on how much was raised during the entire 2018/2019 process. Despite mounting public outcry calling on the MYS to provide the public a comprehensive financial breakdown in cents and dollars, how much was generated at every stage of the competition, and how much in total did the ministry received as in sponsorship contribution, the organizers continued to be lackadaisical in its openness.
The Ministry has also remainED tightlipped, and has presented a defiant posture in letting out any information surrounding the funding collected and generated during the 2018/2019 NCSM. As the 2019/2020 NCSM is fast approaching, the Ministry of Youth and Sports has demanded counties that received allotment during the last competition to provide a comprehensive financial report, as this will serve as a criteria for receiving allotment for the 2019/2020 competition.
Interestingly, the County Meet organizers that now insist on a financial report from various counties, is yet to furnish the public with detailed financial report from the last competition, especially as in how much was generated entirely, how much was received in sponsorship package, and the status of the funding that was generated.
Officials of the Ministry of Youth and Sports during the past regime, are on record for consistently informing the public on how much was raised, in cents and dollars, following the completion of the County Meet. This approach was customary as it helped in clarifying public doubts and concerns over what was generated during the period of the NCSM.
Already, Orange GSM Liberia has committed US$40.000 as lead Sponsors of the National County Sports Meet. Similar to the previous edition, the 2019/2020 National County Sports Meets (NCSM) promises to be another remarkable one. This is based on Orange Liberia’s continuous commitment to support the country’s biggest sporting event.
With few more days to the kickoff of this year’s edition of the tournament, Orange GSM Liberia and the Ministry of Youth and Sports, organizers of the event, on Monday, October 28, signed a partnership agreement that will see the telecommunication company provide US$40,000 as sponsors of the tournament.
Meanwhile, Youth and Sports Minister D. Zoegar Wilson, has praised the telecommunication company for the partnership, and the level of cooperation between the two institutions.
Wilson said it was due to the level of cooperation that the ministry deemed it necessary to engage the telecommunication company for sponsorship of this year’s edition of the tournament.
In January 2019 when LBDI presented cash prizes to the 2018/2019 Winners, Deputy Sports Minister D. Andy Quamie, called on heads of sports organizations in the various counties to ensure more collaboration in securing partners for the National County Sports Meet.
“We hope that other banks will see the good example of LBDI to follow so that the burden on government will reduce. This will enable us to add five disciplines and that corporate organizations will take some of the responsibilities from the government’s shoulders,” Min. Quamie said. According to Dep. Min. Quamie, the winners of the tournaments had always walked away with only trophies, without any cash prize, noting that history will be kind to the LBDI family. “I know this is just the starting point and the LBDI is willing to partner with the national county sports meet to develop infrastructure,” Minister Quamie said.
Following all the statements, commendation for the financial support, the Ministry is yet to provide a comprehensive financial to the public detailing how much they raised in totality during the 2018/2019 National County Sports Meet. The Ministry has continued to dribble sports journalists especially when they raise the issue of financial report from the 2018/2019 national County Sports Meet. When contacted the Communication Director of the Ministry of Youth and Sports (MYS), Mr. A. Macaulay Paykue, his phone was out of coverage area as he could not be reached to comment on why his ministry has failed to produce a financial report from last county meet. Also, effort to reach Deputy Youth and Sports Minister, G. Andy Quamie proved futile as none of his contacts was on. D. Webster Cassell writes

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