FIFA delegation attends talks on the well-being of the DR Congo women’s national team
A FIFA delegation (www.FIFA.com) led by Secretary General Fatma Samoura met officials of the Congolese Football Federation (FECOFA) – including the interim president, vice-presidents and members of EXCO , as well as the Minister of Sports and Recreation and the Special Advisor to the Head of State – on Saturday 23 October.
The discussions, which took place in a respectful and friendly atmosphere, took place following the abandonment of a qualifying match for the CAF Women’s Africa Cup of Nations by the senior women’s national team of DR Congo, the “Women Leopards” – a situation which led the players to express their frustration and anger.
A majority of the women’s national team attended the meeting and expressed disappointment at the way the team was treated by the country’s sports authorities.
In her address to FECOFA, the FIFA Secretary General expressed her regret and dissatisfaction with the damage inflicted on young players, due to poor coordination between local authorities and poor management of logistics operations.
Madame Samoura stressed that it was unfortunate for a football nation as important as DR Congo to see its women’s national team disqualified from the Women’s CAN in such a brutal and unfair manner after months of preparation and sacrifice, also because of the tensions which prevail between FECOFA and the cabinet of the Minister of Sports and Leisure.
During the talks, the government gave assurances that better mechanisms would be put in place between the Minister’s Office and FECOFA, and that the players would receive the attention they deserved, with their well-being also a priority.
After the meeting, the players expressed their thanks and appreciation to the FIFA Secretary General and the FIFA delegation for holding open and frank discussions which helped ease tensions and restore trust between the players, FECOFA and the government.
The allocations due to the senior women’s team will be paid to them in the coming days following payments already made in advance to cover part of the transport costs of the players.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of FIFA.
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© Press release 2021