— Urges the government to increase the budgetary allocation
It is not unique to Liberia that a single ministry is in charge of overseeing everything related to youth and sports in the nation; other countries with comparable structures can be found all over the world.
However, there are some nations, such as Sierra Leone, where there is a Ministry of Sports that is solely in charge of overseeing the overall management of the nation's sports development, promotion, and regulation.
Chris Weah, a football financier and the president of Stages FC, believes that establishing a similar structure in Liberia will be preferable.
According to Weah, a focused sports ministry will be crucial in transforming the industry and opening up more job opportunities for young people.
“I am calling on, in this manner, the Government of Liberia to ensure through the National Legislature that we have a separate ministry, called the Ministry of Sports, that will concentrate exclusively on the development of sports in our country,” Weah said in his keynote speech at the 36th Anniversary of the Sports Writers Association of Liberia (SWAL) over the weekend.
A self-contained sector that will only concentrate on sports policies will be made possible by the idea of having a ministry of sports, he continued.
In accordance with a National Legislature Act passed in 1982, the Ministry of Youth and Sports was established with the responsibility to "direct the affairs of youths of the nation, to enable them [youths] to most effectively discharge their responsibilities as useful citizens, contribute to the development of the Republic, and promote, control and direct all programs and activities relating to sports."
Furthermore, Weah reiterated calls for the government to increase the annual budgetary allotments for sports.
Budgetary funding for the Ministry of Youth and Sports was increased for the fiscal year 2022 from US$4,231,216 to US$7,615,092, but Weah believes that is insufficient for the growth of sports in the nation.
“In order for you to get Liberians to rally support to sports in this Country, you need to have money, the government of Liberia must provide more funding for sports.”
In a statement made during the program, Deputy Youth and Sports Minister G. Andy Quamie urged Sports Reporters to go above and beyond to support their own.
Minister Quamie urged current sports journalists to think big and pursue the bigger picture in reference to former sports reporters who have made and are still making a name for themselves on the bigger stage throughout the country and the entire world. He acknowledged the contribution made by sports reporters to the development of the industry.
Meanwhile, the President of SWAL, Kolubah Zayzay, congratulated his fellow members for celebrating 36 years of existence as an auxiliary of the Press Union of Liberia.