At a turf-cutting ceremony on 10 April for the GOAL project in Kigali (Rwanda), the President of the Rwanda Football Federation announced the full support of his association for the re-election of Joseph S. Blatter as FIFA President.
Ceasar Kayizari said: “I wish you victory at the upcoming FIFA Congress.” His words were echoed by the Minister of Youth, Culture and Sports, François Ngarambe, who added: “I hope the national associations will again choose competence in a few weeks in order to enable you to continue your mission and to remain at the helm of FIFA.”
On the same day in Khartoum, the President of the Sudan Football Association, Dr. Kamal Hamid Shaddad, said: “I hope that we continue with you in further fruitful cooperation.”
These declarations from the Rwanda Federation and the Sudan Federation follow similar statements already made by the national associations of Lesotho, Zambia and Mozambique.
Rwanda, whose GOAL project involves the construction of new headquarters and a technical centre, was the ninth stop made by the FIFA President on his tour of Southern and Eastern Africa, during which he was accompanied by Mohamed Bin-Hammam (Qatar), FIFA Executive Committee member and Chairman of the GOAL Programme, Ismaïl Bhamjee (Botswana), FIFA Executive Committee member, and Abedi Pelé Ayew (Ghana), member of the FIFA Football Committee.
The tour between 5–11 April took in visits to the national associations of Angola, Zambia, Botswana, Lesotho, South Africa, Swaziland, Mozambique, Malawi, Rwanda and Sudan. During the tour, the FIFA President officially inaugurated three new GOAL projects in Zambia (headquarters), Lesotho (headquarters and a football field) and Mozambique (football academy). Joseph S. Blatter also received audiences with the highest political authorities in the countries he visited.
In summing up his 6-day trip, Joseph S. Blatter commented: “I am extremely happy that three new GOAL projects have now been completed and others are in the planning phase, marking a further step in the development of football in this region. I was shown a very warm welcome everywhere and it has given me further confidence with regard to the election.”
Of the 52 national associations on the African continent, 36 are currently benefiting from GOAL – 29 projects have been completed or are in the implementation phase, and seven projects are in planning.