BOOSAASO, September 25, 2017 - The maiden regional football league in the Puntland State of Somalia, has come to an end with Bari Football Club [BFC] crowned the winners of the league.
A highly-colored ceremony to mark on the wind-up of the 9-team competition, the first official football league for the Northeastern State, took place in the commercial capital of Boosaaso on Saturday 23 September 2017.
The league teams inclued: winners Bari Football Club, Garowe City FC, COMSED FC, Boosaaso city FC, FC Horseed, Homboboro FC, SBC FC, Somtel FC, and the lowest ranked Qardho FC.
Somali Football Federation [SFF] president, Abdiqani Said Arab, who spoke at the closing ceremony, highlighted that the organization of such football league in the country’s states was part of the SFF’s Spread the Football program which composes of a number of development projects.
“Today we are here for the conclusion of the official football league for the Puntland State, but this is part of a nationwide development programs which are intended to promote football in all States affiliated to the federal government of Somalia” SFF president said at the closing ceremony on Saturday.
Invested in by the Somali Football Federation, the organization of the Puntland State football league came after two years of consecutive development programs carried out in all regional states in the country and as planned each state will have its own official football league.
The development programs that have been running for the past two years had seen football administrators, coaches and referees trained under the Spread the Football initiative.
“In the first year the SFF provided equipment with all clubs in the league and made all necessary facilitations to get the official league on track and I am happy that everything has gone smoothly” the president said. “The Puntland Football Associations offices are also in operation with the SFF has been paying the monthly running coast and this will continue” president Abdiqani Said Arab noted in his address.
Now that the first official football league was done, the teams are prepared to continue from there. They know how to secure sponsorships to be able to cover all their needs next year.
But Somali Football Federation president, Abdiqani Said Arab, pledged that the SFF will continue its development programs in the region adding that other necessary facilitations to help continuation of the maiden football league will also continue.
On his side, the Minister for Youth and Sport of the Puntland State of Somalia, Abdirahman Sheik Ahmed who addressed crowds at the closing ceremony first thanked Somali Football Federation, the Puntland State football Association and all those who contributed to the implementation of the first ever official football league in the State.
“The organization of the league has written a new history, thanks to the Somali Football Federation president Abdiqani Said Arab and his committee members for the good start. I also want to commend the owners and managers of the nine football clubs who competed in the maiden football league” minister Abdirahman Sheik Ahmed said at the closing gathering.
“As a minister of sport for the Puntland State, I have had several discussions with Somali Football Federation on the renovation of football stadiums in the Puntland State and I want to announce that Somali Football Federation will soon start implementing an artificial football Turf in the Puntland State” the minister explained before announcing the closure of the first ever official football league in the Northeastern Somali State of Puntland.