Since the U-17 men’s tournament in 2018 qualifying for U-17 AFCON in Tanzania, UNIFFAC has not organized a competition. Announced for September 2019, then for October, the U-20 women’s tournament was finally not held. Ditto for the U-20 men’s tournament announced for November. A situation that raises questions about the smooth running started by the organization.
While COSAFA, CECAFA, UFOA and UNAF multiply competitions, UNIFFAC has a paler face despite the promises of the new executive.
Not a week goes by without the Associations of regional federations organizing tournaments of all categories for both men and women. In 2019 alone, the COSAFA (Council of Southern Africa Football Associations) held the COSAFA Men’s Cup (25 May – 8 June), the COSAFA Women’s Cup (31 July – 9 August) in South Africa, the COSAFA Men’s U-17 in Blantyre in October, and will held from December 4 to 14, the U-20 tournament in Lusaka, Zambia.
The CECAFA, which has just concluded the senior women’s tournament with the triumph of the Harambee Starlets of Kenya, is not far behind. The Council for East and Central Africa Football Associations has multiplied the tournaments in all categories this year and will organize from December 9 to 18 in Uganda, a tournament for women U-17 almost simultaneous with the senior men’s tournament planned for 7 to December 19 and whose draw took place at the beginning of the week.
In both zones A and B of the UFOA, the teams also live to the rhythm of the tournaments. Yet the Central Zone is the one that suffers the most from the absence of competitions. Since the departure of Patrice-Edouard Ngaissona, the Union des Fédérations de Football d’Afrique Centrale has still not found its cruising speed and seems to sail as far as the eye can see.
Is the problem only in the lack of funding? It should be remembered that UNIFFAC is dependent on the CAF and for the organization of competitions, it is bound to tie in with the rules of the parent institution for help or simply downstream of the calendar. The previous management had been strongly criticized and the ensuing crisis with the decline of Gabon, Congo and Chad.
Today, when tensions are calm, all the measures and proposals envisaged since the advent of the new executive have failed. What about the call for applications launched last August for the position of Executive Director? Tournaments scheduled then canceled? Every UNIFFAC initiative seems to fail.
Will the U17 men’s tournament be held in Cameroon from December 12 to 22 as originally announced by the executive committee? The question remains unresolved two weeks before the kickoff of the competition.