SLOOAA Prepares for 2009 Soccer Tournament

9 January 2009 at 00:26 | 2979 views

By Sanpha Sesay PV Texas Correspondent.

A release from the executive of the Sierra Leone Overseas Old Athletic Association (SLOOA, has announced a date and location for the 2009 Sierra Leonean’s soccer tournament in the United States.

From SLOOAA president Sibil Decker, it is now confirmed that the host Ohio State is ready to welcome at least 14 registered member states who will assemble in the city of Columbus, Ohio on August 1st 2009.

The registered teams from various states include Texas, Maryland (defending champion), Washington, Ohio, Atlanta, North Carolina, California, Virginia, New Jersey, Boston, Delaware, Philadelphia, New York and Arizona.

The release further states that an election,but with no specification on how it will be conducted, is planned in order to elect and confirm a permanent executive that will man the affairs of SLOOAA and the annual tournament.

Meanwhile, there is in place an interim executive with remarkable old soccer players namely, Mr. Sibil Decker in Maryland as President, Mr. Patrick Dangawalli, Vice President (Texas), Mr. Sento Johnson in New York is the (Financial Secretary), Mr. Henry Johnson (Publicity Secretary), and Mr. Dede Abu (Secretary General) is in Maryland. All of these people came together in a tele-conference and established the SLOOAA in August 31st, 2007.

The primary aims and objectives of SLOOAA are to bring Sierra Leoneans in the Diaspora together in sports for a common good, to promote interest in the breeding and exhibiting of our social norms, and establish a brotherly relationship between veteran players at home in Sierra Leone and those abroad. SLOOAA also aimed at encouraging Sierra Leoneans in the Diaspora to provide a welfare structure that caters for the improvement of soccer and render livelihood assistance to the veteran players at home in Sierra Leone.

The interim executive has achieved a lot by initially drafting a constitution that establishes rules and regulations of a social club. Following that, a bank account has been created to save all money raised through the tournaments and by fundraising activities that the club intends to undertake in the future. The money, according to one of the interim executive members, is to help the desperate ones in Sierra Leone and here in the United States. The Leone Stars, veteran players, schools and all sports activities in Sierra Leone will benefit from SLOOA funds, the executive asserted. The interim executive further went on to register the organization with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) as a non- profit organization and it’s working towards securing the 501C to clear its way for soliciting funds so that the national cohesive goals will be achieved.

SLOOAA membership and participation are free from discrimination based on age, sex, players or non players, marital status, states or region, tribe or religion, and it’s a completely non-political organization. It guarantees the right of all Sierra Leoneans to participate in this national civic club. The organization is trying to preserve Sierra Leone culture through sports and maintain the dignity of soccer that were first class in the 80s. Participating states are kindly asked to tender their registration for the 2009 tournament as earlier as possible.

The release concluded by advising all Sierra Leoneans participating or wishing to participate in this yearly event to cooperate with the guidelines set up by the executive during the duration of the tournament.

Photo: Defending champion Maryland.