The New Focus for Sports Writers

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If Liberian sports writers and broadcasters don’t promote sports with local content, then they must belong to the European Sports Writers Association and not Sports Writers Association of Liberia, SWAL.

That statement was made by Mr. Musa Hassan Bility, president of the Liberia Football Association (LFA) during the official inducting ceremonies of the administration of SWAL.

On the surface, sports writers at the program showed their amusement since European games are not played in Liberia. On a deeper level, it is true that newspapers and radio stations fill their contents with European games.

While it is true that sports newspapers are filled with European content, those who manage them don’t write them. They download the stories from the internet and transfer them and use them to feed those crazy about the games. So it means that we cannot have European Sports Writers Association but we can have European Sports Downloaders Association which may have legal implications.

Though Musa Bility was concerned about the lack of local content in their dailies, sports papers and on radio, it must be stated that it could be suggested we change SWAL to Football Writers Association of Liberia (FWAL), since presently there are no active content in track and field, boxing, taekwondo, table tennis, judo, basketball, weightlifting, and other sports.

In truth the Ministry of Youth & Sports that provide government’s support for the creation and sustenance of sports has not able to get the administration of the Liberia Basketball Association and their aggrieved counterparts to see reason to resume basketball activities in the country.

The administration at the Liberia Boxing Association has been crying for a boxing ring for the last five years without success. And without a boxing ring, there can be no boxing activity and as a result sports writers cannot write or broadcast a sport that is inactive.

Table tennis faces the same problem likewise lawn tennis. Few years ago, there was a major confusion within the lawn tennis administration and whatever the case, the sport has not been able to recover. Hence with the administration unable to announce its programs, there is nothing much to report, anyway.

The last Olympics in Rio, Brazil saw Liberia being represented by two track and field athletes who reside abroad. What happened to the Liberia National Track & Field Federation? The association seemed to be active and inactive.
Without adequate financial support from the Liberian government the track administration has not been able to look beyond its nose and therefore the administration waits from the crumbs that falls from the Liberia National Olympic Committee to show that it is still around. Meantime young track and field athletes see their dreams wasting away.

I can continue with several other sports but I hope you get the idea. The dearth of support to other sports, apart from soccer, has been the cause that has eroded the sporting gains of the years gone by.

So Mr. Bility’s challenge points indirectly to what the government, in this case, the Ministry of Youth & Sports does not have the political will to make the financial and ultimate sacrifices that could make a difference.

Even in the soccer arena some semblance of financial support comes from the government, Liberia lacks behind its West African neighbors, where more than money is set aside to develop sports. Bility mentioned that until sports writers tell lawmakers about the little money put aside for soccer, Liberia cannot go anywhere.

While Mr. Bility’s challenge is instructive, lawmakers are aware of the dismal results that Liberia experience in continental encounters and therefore they should be asking themselves how is it that other countries have quality players and we don’t have any at home.

A little thinking on the part of the lawmakers could point them to cite, for example, Mr. Henry Brown, head of the LFA technical department, to explain why Lone Star is always losing at continental games; the Minister of Youth & Sports and the President of the Liberia Football Association can also explain why Liberia fails against their opponents and help with their recommendations.

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