By Nformi Sonde Kinsai
The recently appointed General Manager, GM, of the Cameroon Football Federation, FECAFOOT, French-born, Patrick Precheur, has, barely a month in office, confirmed that management at the institution is not the best. He made the declaration at a press
conference in Yaounde on July 14 organised by the President of the Federation, Iya Mohammed.
On his first impression about FECAFOOT, Precheur said the image of the Federation is smeared. He went ahead to outline lack of solidarity, indiscipline, no precise organisational chart, wastage of resources, amongst others, as issues ailing the Federation. He noted that the image of FECAFOOT needs urgent cleansing which must go along with a change in the mentality of its personnel.
Precheur said medium and long-term objectives, which shall embody the broadening of sources of income for the Federation, development of football infrastructure in the country, etc, must be set.
Reacting to questions bordering on his doubtful management qualities, Precheur said he has a diploma which encompasses all aspects of management. He talked of a number of posts of responsibilities where he exercised his managerial skills.
Prior to Precheur's declarations, Iya had briefed journalists on the deliberations of FECAFOOT Executive Committee meeting which held between July 13 and 14. He said during the meeting, the members evaluated the first round of D1 Championship, recruitment and transfer of players, performances of national clubs at the continental level as well as the performances of the national team at the joint eliminatory phase for the African Nations Cup and the World Cup qualifications.
He said Precheur was also presented officially to other executive members and added that he (Precheur) is already in possession of a resident permit and a signed contract by the Minister Sports and Physical Education. Stating that the new GM started work on June 15, Iya noted that Precheur's situation with the state and FECAFOOT is in order.
On the finances of the Federation, Iya said the treasury is quite scanty especially as the much needed subventions from the state has not been forthcoming. He also talked of enormous sums FECAFOOT dished out in support of national clubs that were engaged in continental competitions with virtually nothing coming in return.
Iya revealed that a day to their Executive Committee meeting, Hotel Makombé blocked the Federation's bank account over a debt of FCFA 700 million. He, however, noted that part of the money has been paid even though his team is being harassed over a debt they inherited from their predecessors.
He added that there is even no piece of paper indicating how that debt was incurred.
Noting that Europe is apparently saturated, he said the Federation is making arrangements with an American company to create outlets for the recruitment of young Cameroonian footballers in Canada, Central and North America.
He quoted an example of how hundreds of Cameroonians who went for test matches in Europe all came back after the exercise. Precheur has been given the go-ahead to negotiate with the American company.
In reaction to the poor management of FECAFOOT as observed by Precheur, Iya argued that the latter's comparison is with the European management style, which is far different from what obtains in Africa.
He said he has never pretended that all is well at FECAFOOT and enumerated a gamut of problems his team inherited and have been grappling with the since 1990.
"A good part of our resources go to pay lawyers to handle cases which we did not create," Iya said. He said if by the end of their mandate, 80 percent of their objectives were attained they would be satisfied.
The First Vice President of the Federation, Jean Réné Atangana Mballa, also spoke on the various infrastructural projects of FECAFOOT. He said there are plans to create playgrounds in some towns across the country, in collaboration with local councils and the elite of the said areas.