Good financial governance is key to ensuring football development around the world
Fourteen member associations participated in the workshop held in Kigali, Rwanda
Workshop aimed at further developing their capacity in financial governance and management
FIFA has placed the focus on football development in the last seven years, reinvesting the lion’s share of its revenues to grow and develop the game around the world. Since 2016, more than 1,600 projects, representing a total investment of USD 2.8 billion, have been completed in member associations, confederations and zonal/regional associations through the FIFA Forward Development programme. The projects have included national technical centres, youth academies, stadium renovation and the organisation of competitions. The amount spent has far outstripped FIFA’s increase in revenues in the same period, illustrating the importance of spending every penny wisely, and in the current four-year cycle, FIFA Forward 3.0 will see a 30% increase in the amount made available to member associations and confederations. To help ensure the funds go where they are intended and that member associations get the best value for money, FIFA regularly holds Financial Governance Workshops around the world.
As part of this programme, and using the newly created Financial Governance Guide as a framework, finance directors and General Secretaries from 14 CAF member associations gathered at a workshop in Kigali, Rwanda, which was aimed at further developing their capacity in financial governance and management. “The newly created Financial Governance Guide is a key instrument to support member associations to improve on different topics where weaknesses were highlighted in previous central audit reviews,” explained Christoph Suppiger, FIFA Head of MA Finance Services. “The Financial Governance Guide contains templates on different topics that the member associations can adapt for their own use and implementation.” Gelson Fernandes, FIFA Director Member Associations Africa, added: “Good Financial governance is key for the development of football. Our job is to follow and develop our member associations, and capacity building is one of our pillars. As well as having a close and open working relationship, they can also exchange knowledge among themselves with best practice cases."
Financial Governance Workshop in Kigali, Rwanda
Participants during the Financial Governance Workshop in Kigali, Rwanda
A general view during the Financial Governance Workshop in Kigali, Rwanda
Starting with a presentation of the Financial Governance Guide, the three-day workshop included discussion, group work and case sessions on topics such as conflict-of-interest, planning and budgeting and procurement process, as well as the importance of having modern accounting software. Examples of good practice were given by the member associations of Lesotho and Rwanda. Similar workshops have also taken place this year in Indonesia, for member associations from Southeast Asia, in New Caledonia, for OFC member associations, and in the United Arab Emirates, for four other AFC member associations. Further workshops are planned in December in Senegal, for other African member associations, and in Bahamas for all Caribbean member associations.
“The workshop has been very valuable, providing us with relevant, practical and ethical tools for financial governance,” said Edgar Watson Suubi, CEO of the Ugandan Football Association (FUFA). “I applaud FIFA for the presentation which brings out the real challenges we face in our day-to-day operations at the member association and the appropriate guidance on how to solve the challenges. I would personally advise that every member association take part in this workshop as it is key to their performance.” Ahmad Nazeer Hossen Bowud, the General Secretary of the Mauritian Football Association, described the workshop as an excellent platform for participants to exchange experiences. “This workshop offers new tools and allows the participating member associations to have a better understanding of the expectations of FIFA in relation to the existing FIFA Forward regulations and the FIFA Financial Governance programme,” he said. “It also empowers the participating member associations to be able to make an actual situational analysis of their own internal financial governance process and detect their weaknesses so they can make improvements.”