Connect with us
NOT IN USE

People & Lifestyle

Being a football lover married to a former footballer made football part of my life – FIFA Secretary General Fatma Samoura

Published

on

FIFA Secretary General Fatma Samoura

In the first of a new series of high profile interviews dubbed ‘In Conversation With’, Ghanaian Journalist, Juliet Bawuah, sits with FIFA Secretary General, Fatma Samba Diouf Samoura.

Recorded in Lagos, Nigeria, the interview focuses on Madam Samoura’s reign thus far, policy interventions and direction, FIFA’s strategy for the women’s game, the Women’s World Cup and Africa’s representation among others.

The interview follows another high profile one with FIFA President Gianni Infantino in Mauritania last year.

A successful name with years of know-how covering sports, Bawuah recently led the conversation about inclusion for women in sports on the African continent by organizing the Africa Women’s Sports Summit in Accra. Among other key declarations, the event called for greater female inclusion in the African sports ecosystem.

Full transcript below.

Juliet Bawuah (JB): Madam Fatma Samoura, thank you so much for agreeing to speak with us.

Fatma Somoura (FS): Thank You, Juliet. It’s a pleasure.

JB: Three years on, you are the most influential woman in sports. How has the journey been for you so far in this current position?

FS: The journey has been very exciting and bumpy at times but coming at the end of the FIFA administration during the moment of crisis was also something that helped me bring about changes. Today, we are an administration of 800 people coming from 52 different countries with revenue amounting to 6.4 billion dollars for the period 2015, 2018 and today we can say that FIFA has a better image. And more importantly, football has been brought back into the center of everything that FIFA does. And that was the most important thing after what we went through in 2015.

JB: You spoke about how bumpy it has been. Give us some insights.

FS: It took us about 6 months to finalize the first strategy. The vision for the future that was documented is very inspiring. It also took us time to re organize all the committees. We went from 26 different committees to nine committees and before the leadership, the new leadership of FIFA, they were hardly women in the majority of these committees. Today, we have 34 women occupying very big positions within these communities and I am proud to be leading to be leading an administration where we have 43% of women at all levels of the administration.

JB: How have you managed your transition into full time football administration?

FS: I was a football lover. I have been married to a former footballer for more than 30 years so football was already part of my life but when appointed FIFA Secretary General, the transformation was very gradual because one thing that really happened to me was the fact that the new president wanted also to embrace more diversity. And that was exactly what I was doing day in and day out when I was serving as a UN official for 21 years. We have also more people coming from outside with different vision from the UN, like me but also from the private sector who are also bringing in new ideas into the new FIFA administration. And finally, we developed recently and launched in October the first ever women football division. It means that my appointment is not only an isolated case. It is something that is being trickled down to the level of the 211 member association and today again I am really thrilled to see that 16 member associations have decided to also appoint secretary general to be leading their administration.

JB: Of the many challenges you encounter in the day-to-day handling of your job, which one is at the heart of your agenda and that of FIFA?

FS; Well, we have many agendas. Last year was the world cup, that was great success, and as you could see we were not disappointed by the African teams. Although they did not make it after the first group, they really demonstrated a high level of tactical level and also of technicality. We have many, many battles not only one, the most important one is to become more transparent meaning that making sure that all the reform agenda is fully implemented, meaning that we want to promote gender. We want to promote women football. We want to promote development at all level. From the grassroots to the head level. We want 60 million women to be playing football by 2026, doubling literally the number of players. We want to have an administration that is solid, that is closer to the member association and translate into the opening of 10 regional development offices across the world of which three are in Africa. It also means more outreach in terms of communication. Having a new digital unit is also something that we’re exploring now in FIFA. Another battle is increasing the number of competition at grassroots level but also for women competition.

 

JB: The representation of African women in sports is still far below the appreciable levels. What can be done to change this?

FS: We have made progress in women football in Africa. First because I cannot speak on behalf of the president of CAF but I know that he is taking the development of women football very seriously. CAF was certainly the first organization and the first confederation to organize women football symposium immediately after the new president and the new leadership was elected. And I can say also that from what I have seen and heard during the last women AFCON in Cameroun and in Ghana last year, it was something that really showed that the level is growing. Unfortunately, Ghana did not qualify for the women’s world cup which is a pity but I have seen the under-17 Ghanaian team and also the Under-20 playing in France and I was even so thrilled by their performance that once they beat Korea, I think, I accompanied them to the dressing room and me and the girls were doing the dance. That was very fantastic and extraordinary moment.

 

JB: Since you joined FIFA, a lot has been done to take women’s football to the next level, what has excited you the most?

FS: I am very much looking forward to the first time having the women convention event. It is an event that will see the participation of 400 people meaning that each of the 211-member associations will also bring on board the person in charge of women football where we would be discussing the five pillars of the women football strategy that was launched in October. It is an opportunity also to engage with the political leaders but also with the civil society and with people who are very active in prompting human rights. We want to make it an inclusive event whereby women football will be seen through the lens of social but also on football and technicality. After that event, we will be signing a declaration with all the head of states that would be present and all the ministries of sports that would be present in that gathering to make it a road map that would be really followed up very closely by FIFA. There is something that is also dear to me. It is to make sure that the last country that is today impeding women from participating in men’s games decide to go ahead and abolish that position and that women can be allowed to watch both men and women’s games.

JB: Definitely some gains have been made with the women’s game in Africa but are you hopeful that it would even get better after this tournament?

FS: First, it is to show the rest of the world that women’s football is not a mere investment. And even for some African games, the tickets have already been sold out which means that the investors also be watching differently the women’s game after this world cup because our main target is to have one billion broadcast viewers so meaning 250 million more viewers than what we experienced in Canada which was already a great achievement in terms of participation and but also in terms of the women’s game.

 

JB: China seems to be in focus for the women’s game now. We’ve seen players going to China. I think there’s been some paradigm shift.

FS: Definitely. Meaning China believes in women football. If countries like China who are traditionally not football nation are investing in the women game this is a strong signal so we Africans should also be following the path because it means that the future really is in women’s football. And the future, you have to prepare it today.

 

JB: A lot of people have praised women football under your leadership but do you reckon that there is the need to do more?

FS: Doing more is fine but these messages Is not only addressed to FIFA. My message also goes to the leadership of Africa and also the leadership of football in general. If you invest in women football, now that we are seeing tremendous progress being made, to train more women at the level of football administration, to promote them at the highest level of the football hierarchy, that would be followed by more investment not only from FIFA but also the sponsors. And if we get more money, we can invest more in infrastructure, we can invest more in competition, we can invest more in the training of the administrative staff who are also women and finally we can also invest in the grassroots and this would be yielding definitely better results. A lot of investments and I am quite confident that by the timemaybe  we finish the mandate of Mr. Infantino, people can come and say ‘yes, you made it and today, we don’t talk about women football anymore. We just talk about football because women football is at the same level as men’s football.’

JB: What would make you the happiest woman in football when your mandate is done and you look back at what you were able to accomplish?

FS: We don’t take only women as spectators. We don’t only consider them as people who are working backstage, and who are working on administrative level and we take it seriously. We reach our target of having a big number of women having played football and we also are able to sit around the table with the world leaders and tell them ‘believe in what the leadership of FIFA has done, of the seed that they have planted because if you invest in women football, you would be equally rewarded by the result and also by the fact that it has a very, very strong social power.’ Football as we all know is a unique unifier. It can help bridge differences between nations but it can also promote equality between men and women at each level in all countries.

JB: Madam Fatma Samoura. Thank you so much for your time.

FS: Thank you, Juliet.

Advertisement

People & Lifestyle

AIDEC Consultancies International & Academic City sign MoU to deepen practical AI knowledge

Published

on

The teams from AIDEC and ACity in a group photograph

Africa Integrated Development and Communications Consultancies (AIDEC) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Academic City University College (ACity) to provide practical knowledge in areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics (STEAM).

The MoU was executed on behalf of the two organizations represented by Mr. Ambrose Yennah, Executive Chairman of AIDEC and Professor Fred McBagonluri, President, and Provost of ACity.

Executive Chairman for AIDEC Consultancies, Ambrose Yennah, said: “the agreement seeks to provide students with practical hands-on-training in Data Science, Machine Learning, Robotics and other advanced technological training in Artificial Intelligence (AI) in areas of STEAM needed to efficiently work in the job market.”

He said the MoU is a private sector initiative between the two organizations to compliment government’s effort at digitalization and will enable them to collaborate with other Consortium Partners for the roll out of several Digital Solutions and Services.

“The agreement will include but not limited to the study and application of Artificial Intelligence (AI) tools, Robotics, Data Science, Machine Learning, Business Process Outsourcing Services (BPO) with specific focus on the health, and Educational Sectors including Executive Training for the Country Ghana and scaling up to the continent of Africa in the near-term,” he added.

President and Provost of ACity, Professor Fred McBagonluri, said the MoU will help in developing ready job skills by providing access to AI programmes that would help student use technology to pursue research initiatives that is focused on solving the needs of the society.

“The MoU, as part of its objectives, agree to establish, implement and create an enabling environment for students to engage in research and practical consulting assignments as a collaboration between industry and other academic institutions for practical, hands-on training, research, and fieldwork for their mutual good,” he said.

The Consortium Partners, he added, will provide top notch business, educational and technology solutions and services including Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC) platform as a virtual and open educational resource facility to our target customers in the public, private and third sectors.

AIDEC and ACity in collaboration with other Consortium Partners will identify projects ideas and invest in them to generate employment in IT/Digital Solutions and Services and generate income for the Consortium Partners whilst providing an avenue for upgrading the skills and competencies of students with creative and innovative technologies that will expose and prepare them for the job market including Students exchange programs for practical hands-on training, research and fieldwork.

The Consortium Partners agree to work to improve and expand their Institutional capacities in Artificial Intelligence, Robotics, Data Science, Machine learning including online learning platforms and programs to whip up the interest of students enrolling for higher education for STEAM, SparX leaning Xperience and other competency-based professional training programs for an all-inclusive digital transformation.

Continue Reading

People & Lifestyle

Can you fly with Delta 8 Gummies?

Published

on

Picture 1 26

Considering taking your Delta 8 Gummies on your next trip? But worried if it’s legit or if there are some unknown laws airlines companies have stated somewhere and you have no idea about them. US domestic flights allow flyers to carry delta 8 gummies that are legalized under the Farm Bill. However, this is not the case for overseas flights. Continue reading to know much more. (more…)

Continue Reading

Listen

Episode 33 on StudentOfLife Podcast is all about ‘Manifestation’

Published

on

image 6483441 1

Understanding the true laws and principles of it, realising that it is not simply about visualising and saying affirmations, write stuff down and it simply appears with time! It’s deeper than that. Understand the law of energy(chakras), law of vibration and governing your surrounds is key. Akosua Peprah is not telling you what you want to hear, but what you NEED to hear and the hidden truths of manifestation. (more…)

Continue Reading

People & Lifestyle

Top Factors to Consider When Choosing an Online Gambling Site

Published

on

Gambling sports

Over the past few decades, the online casino market has witnessed a record-breaking boom. Gamers and gamblers alike started to prefer it as a form of entertainment. Since everyone has instant access to mobile technologies, you can access your favorite casino any time of the day. 

Anyone can open a branch or work as an affiliate partner in the gambling industry; it is no longer a restricted industry. As a result of fierce competition, users have to be more careful. They now must watch out for fraudsters and stay away from scam websites. Here is a criterion to help you pick the best online casino.

Pay Attention to User Testimonials

A trustworthy betting site will have a lot of reviews. To determine the platform’s dependability, most reviews must be favorable. The options for gamblers to read reviews and spot a reputable site are plentiful, ranging from a variety of apps to mobile-optimized websites like the featured sites on legitgamblingsites.com. Based on the reviews, one can choose whether to register and start using the platform.

Regulations and Licenses for Online Casinos


Verify the presence of gambling seals of permission to ensure that your chosen platform is regulated correctly. Typically, information about them appears at the bottom of the webpage. Each gaming company needs to be registered and granted a license by reputable administrative bodies to operate in a specific market like;

  •       The UK Gambling Commission
  •       The Alderney Gambling Control Commission
  •       The Gibraltar Regulatory Authority

Before registering, consider a casino’s legislation and ensure they are licensed. 

Read Also: Gambling Laws Across Africa

Adaptability to Your Betting Aim


An online gambling site must satisfy your needs and goals. Check to see if it offers the sports you want to wager on. Knowing which forms of payment the website accepts would also be beneficial. Settle for one that accepts your most convenient payment option. 

Keep an eye out for the site’s policies and procedures and any bonuses that may be available. Checking whether the platform is accessible from a mobile device is an additional factor you should consider. It would be helpful if you could use the platform whenever and wherever you want. Therefore, look for a mobile-friendly platform with a website or mobile application.

Customer Support Center


Once in a while, questions and inconveniences always arise, whether you’re a high roller or a novice. It can be concerning the rules of a particular game, where to find your favorite live casino table, and which payment methods are accepted where you live. Having someone available to help you right away is beneficial.

The top gaming platforms work hard to give their users prompt, efficient support. They even use it in their advertisements to persuade the audience that they deserve their trust.

An absence of live chat or an abnormally low response time could be a red flag. Although it’s not always the case, scammers don’t make significant investments because their income is uncertain.

Final Thoughts
Playing at a reputable casino is truly a unique experience. Players have access to jackpots and great bonuses for more elevated gaming. You can make the best decision for choosing the best online gambling site through the above pointers.  

Continue Reading

People & Lifestyle

How To Make Your Followers Feel Special On Instagram

Published

on

gain more instagram followers

Instagram is a great platform when it comes to growth. Whether you’re an influencer looking to build your brand or a business hoping to increase conversions and bring in more customers, you should definitely be using Instagram as part of your social media strategy.

However, it’s not just about “using” Instagram. You’ve also got to find a way to make your Instagram followers feel special; after all, if they feel like you’re treating them poorly or if they don’t feel welcome or valued, then they might decide that you’re not worth the effort in a crowded market. Here’s how to make your followers feel special on Instagram.

Read Also: Instagram Username Ideas For Girls 2022

Engage with them

While it’s perfectly fine to use services like Social Followers Free to net yourself a big Instagram follower count, keeping those followers around is quite another matter. After all, if you don’t talk to your followers, then how can you expect them to feel respected or involved in your process?

That’s why you need to reach out to your followers and engage with them. When you receive comments, make sure to comment back and reply to your commenters. Say something that’s specific to the comment and show interest in your followers’ lives; you’d be amazed at the positive effect this can have.

Ask for engagement

When you post on Instagram, you can make your followers feel special simply by asking them for their opinions on what you’re doing. At the end of every post, ask a specific question that pertains to the content you’ve created and involves your followers in some way.

For example, let’s say you’ve just posted something about gaming-related equipment. At the end of your post, you could ask something like “what’s your favourite mechanical gaming keyboard? Let’s talk about it!”. This will incentivise your followers to reply to you and talk to you, thus making them feel more valued and special.

Show them the real you

As a platform, Instagram has come under very understandable fire for what many commenters have described as a lack of reality. Influencers will make themselves look unrealistically attractive or wealthy in order to shore up followers and create an aspirational aesthetic, when this isn’t how they really live.

As such, you can make your followers feel special by showing them who you really are. Don’t change the way you behave or the way you live “for the ‘gram”; don’t pretend to be richer than you really are, and don’t heavily rely on filters and airbrushing when you’re posting pictures. This will make your followers feel like they’re really talking to you and not a social media construction.

Hop into your followers’ comments

Nothing makes a follower more delighted than when they see a comment from you popping up on one of their posts. If your followers are active on Instagram, then why not check out their content and post comments on it? This will encourage them to comment back, and it will make them feel like you really do care about them.

Some of your Instagram followers may even be budding influencers themselves, and if they are, then it’ll boost their profile even more to comment on their stuff, especially if you’re more well-known than they are. There really is no downside to checking out some of your followers’ content and commenting on it.

Create content with your followers

Following on from the above, if some of your followers are budding social media influencers, then why not reach out to see if they want to create some content with you? If their style and goals align with yours, then it could be a very rewarding exercise – both creatively and in terms of followers – to create content with them.

Of course, you should make sure you’re picking the right collaborators before you decide to create content with them. Check out their content first to make sure it works alongside your style. Everyone’s doing their own thing on Instagram, so if your vibe doesn’t work with someone else’s, it doesn’t mean anything about the content you’re both creating.

Listen to what your followers are saying

It’s always a good idea to keep your ear to the ground when it comes to comments your followers are making on your content. If you notice certain trends in what they’re saying – if they’re making suggestions about what kind of content they want to see from you, for example – then you should be listening to those trends.

You don’t need to let comments and followers dictate what you do entirely, though. After all, if you only did what others told you to do, then you’d stand to lose the thing that made you special in the first place. Finding a healthy balance between pleasing your followers and making sure you’re happy in yourself is the ideal when it comes to content creation.

Hold contests and giveaways

Hey, everyone likes free stuff, right? One of the best ways you can make your Instagram audience feel special is to hold contests and giveaways offering them the chance to win things. If you’re an influencer partnered with brands, then why not work with those brands to coordinate a giveaway for your followers?

Conversely, if you’re a brand looking to shore up an authentic following on Instagram, then holding giveaways and contests is an excellent way to do that. It shows that you have a lot of faith in your product and that you’re happy for people to try it out and see for themselves how high-quality it is.

Continue Reading

People & Lifestyle

Video Of Visual Display Network Celebrating TV Personality Selly Galley On Her Birthday Goes Viral

Published

on

IMG 0485

On the 25th of September 2022, Ghanaian Actress and TV Personality, Selly Galley celebrated her birthday which she dubbed the “Sellybration”.

Digital Marketer Gorbachev Awuah and his team at the Visual Display Network (VDN) surprised her with some meals and products from some of their Clients and Brands they represent.

The Visual Display Network (VDN) Team wanted to “Sellybrate” her and another year under her belt. Clients and Brands that VDN has and affiliates with all came through to make the day a wonderful one.

Kasapereko Company Limited provided some packs of Stormz Energy Drink as well as some Puma Drinks and Awake Mineral Water. Kubs Original Provided a box of their well knows Boffrot puff puff mix. Perfect Touch Restaurant, Porkytos, Liquid & Grills Restaurant, and Tempo De Dio all also provided the best meals on their menu.

Selly Galley and her husband Prayetiatia showed so much appreciation to Visual Display Network (VDN) and all their Clients and Brands they work with and also stated that they made their day.

The video of Digital Marketer Gorbachev Awuah and his Team delivering the meals and products to her has since gone viral.

We applaud the Visual Display Network (VDN) Team for the great work they’re doing in the industry.

Instagram – @vdngroup

TikTok       – @vdngroup

Twitter      – @vdn_group

Facebook – @vdngroup

Continue Reading

Trending