Namibian football makes a complete turn-around this Saturday with the election of a new Namibian Football Association (NFA) leadership; whose tenure will see the country into the World Cup 2010 Era. The New Era Sports desk spoke exclusively to the four candidates vying for the hot seats. Presidential Candidate: John Muinjo (47) Background: Administration is a calling. Started in 1984 when I became a referee and general secretary of the Northern Region of NFA. I was manager of Royals in Tsumeb. I was among the first group of referees to be accredited by FIFA after Independence. Elected Vice-President of the NFA in 1996 and sat under the leadership of Emmanuel Namaseb and Petrus Damaseb. Founding executive member of Cosafa in 1999 and currently the longest serving Cosafa member. Manifesto: Transparency. We have to apply it everywhere in managing football. With it we will apply continuity with other developmental programmes taking place. Developing the clubs and coaches by training through other CAF initiatives. Each club should have its own developmental programme whose yardsticks are the youth. Women representation should be addressed. The fact that our camp has Jackie Gertze in the Executive, augurs well for women football development and gender sensitivity. We want the continuity that we have brought in with the success of the Brave Warriors to be maintained. There is life in football, now. Implementation: Solicit funds that should be channelled right from the regions to the clubs, and not only at the top. We need town councils to advertise in the stadiums and plough back into the community through soccer. A marketing arm of the association is needed to do this business. It should be an independent arm with its own CEO. Presidential Candidate: Henrik Dawids (52) Background: I am a footballer in blood. My blood type is football. I started football administration at the age of 11. I have largely been involved with Blue Waters, as a player in the 80s, a captain in the early 90s and the club owner from 2001 until today. It’s the most successful privately-owned club in the land. Manifesto: The Biggest problem at the moment is the non-existence of Youth Development. Civics started it, but those in the level of administration did nothing to assist the club. And if you look at it with a national eye, you will understand that it’s pathetic. I will start with youth development. Implementation: The current set-up in NFA has to be changed. There is a difference between changing the set-up and changing the people. We have only four administrators – Barry (Rukoro), Titus Kunamwene, the Secretary General as part of the administrators, but the mission is too big. We are sitting with less, but with a big job. I will add new and more people into the game. Vice-Presidential Candidate: Korbinian Amutenya (53) Background: Discipline and willingness to perform, is my motto. A former striker with Owamboland in the 1960s and 70s. Played for Oshakati City between 1972 and 74. Masters degree in management, teacher’s diploma. Medical logistics: administrator of Swapo during the struggle; Chief Medical Officer and Personal Doctor to President Pohamba. Manifesto: Professionalism. The day-to-day activities of the NFA need professional and competent people. They should have more contact and communication with the regions. And professionalism also calls for the recognition of soccer countrywide and not in urban areas. The regions have been left out of Namibian soccer. I will put t emphasis on the need to identify new talent for the Brave Warriors to make it a multi-cultural base as our society entails. Implementation: Look and re-strategize the NFA Secretariat. NFA needs a business plan to enable it to know with what it will carry out its activities. Have a budget of what we have and make sure the people handling the funds are accountable. Vice-Presidential Candidate: Anton Van Wyk (39) Background: I started football at 1. As a boy, my father took me to Black Africa matches and I would sit on the bench with the coaches. I travelled everywhere with the team. Fossie Van Wyk was in charge by then. At nine, I became part of Black Africa’s selection group because I never missed their trainings or matches. At 17 founded the now defunct Challengers Football Club near Soccer House in Katutura. After 1985 I moved to Oranjemund and became involved in refereeing. Returned in 1996 and became involved with the Namibia Premier League. Appointed NPL executive member from 1999 to 2001. Became Black Africa team manager 2001 to 2003 and appointed NPL Chairman from 2004 until last July. Manifesto: We are a team and, as Vice-President, I will take the angle and manifesto of my Present elect, Henrik Dawids.I will stand by what he brings up and will support him. Implementation: I will take a leaf from my success at the helm of the NPL. Look at the allocation of funds to the regions which at the moment are in a sorry state. My achievement with NPL will play a crucial role in the implementation of our strategies. I proudly left the NPL having won the best sponsorship in the country’s history, and such networking will be utilized.
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