Bass unhappy with Canadian embassy
Friday, June 29, 2007
Basiru Gassama, the defeated candidate of the APRC Old Bakau by-election and a great supporter of the Gambian national team, the Scorpions, has expressed his disappointment with the Canadian Embassy in Ghana for refusing to issue visas to Scorpions’ fans to attend and support the Gambian team in Canada.
In a statement issued to the Daily Observer yesterday, Mr. Gassama said that: “If Gambians were issued with visas, I am very much confident that they will not abscond, but support their team and come back to The Gambia after the tournament”.
It came to me by surprise. I met up with Scorpions’ fan club members, both boys and girls, who were with me in the U-17 2005 Peru Football Competition, and who all came back to The Gambia after the football match. These people love their country and are patriotic Gambians,” he said.
According to him, all those who returned after the Peru games did not love to stay in Peru and took the good advice of President Jammeh who sponsored the trip just for the sake of promoting football in the country. “If there are no spectators and supporters or fans, the game of football cannot be popular anymore. Footballers need to make the game more interesting and enjoyable in order to make it more famous,” he said.
According to Mr. Gassama, he sees no reason why the Canadians should deny the Gambian fans visas to attend the tournament, support their team and come back to The Gambia. “If it is because we are Africans, that doesn’t mean that we will stay there. Not every body wants to stay or live in Europe. For me, I love Africa more than Europe. There is no place like home. Therefore, since the fans want to attend the tournament and support their team, the Canadian authorities should give them visas without any condition. Anyone who violates the immigration laws of the state should be either dealt with accordingly or deported,” he said.
To Mr. Gassama, there is no justice in the issuance of visas to the participating countries. “I believe that there is no justice for the fact that if Europeans want to come to Africa, they are not denied visas, but if Africans want to travel to Europe, they are always denied visas. This means that there is no freedom of movement from African countries to any part of EU states or non-EU states. It is high time for footballers and the World Football Governing Body (FIFA) to address the matter as soon as possible.
Mr. Gassama then urged Gambians to take the matter in good faith as wished by President Jammeh and called on every Gambian to pray for the success of the U-20 in the tournament.
Author: Written by Alhagie Jobe
Source: The Daily Observer Newspaper