15 April 2023 | Sport
The President of the Republic, Mr. Wavel Ramkalawan received the President of Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), Mr. Gianni Infantino at State House, yesterday morning. The President, who is also the Patron of the Seychelles Football Federation (SFF), welcomed Mr. Infantino on this first visit to Seychelles..
President Ramkalawan underlined how encouraged he is seeing the number of football clubs that have already shown signs of emerging talents. He gave the commitment of the Government in the development of sports in Seychelles, which he emphasised is a way to keep the young boys and girls away from bad influences as well as for the wellbeing of their health.
“On behalf of the Government of Seychelles, I would like to thank FIFA for all that you are doing for our young people around the world, and more importantly here in Seychelles. We are grateful for all the financial support that the Federation has given to Seychelles, which has helped us to tackle many outstanding issues including the re-surfacing of the stadium. Rest assured of the Government’s commitment and full support in the development and promotion of sports in Seychelles,” said President Ramkalawan.
The courtesy meeting between the Head of State and Mr. Infantino was an opportunity for further exchange of views on the development of football in Seychelles. Furthermore, they discussed on the talent development schemes, and the stadium infrastructures on Mahé, Praslin, and La Digue, whereby Mr. Infantino gave his commitment for FIFA to invest in a stadium. They also spoke about the upcoming Beach Soccer World Cup in 2025, whereby Seychelles will become the first African country to host the tournament.
In an interview held after the meeting, Mr. Infantino said that FIFA is looking forward to the future of Seychelles over the next decade and that they will invest together with the local Federation (SFF) into Football development, making sure that talents from Seychelles can emerge, and play at the international level.
During his short official visit in the country, Mr. Infantino is expected to visit several football projects funded by the Fédération Internationale de Football Association under the Forward 1.0 and Forward 2.0 programmes. He will also inaugurate the Astroturf playing fields at the Seychelles Football Federation headquarters, Roche Caïman which was resurfaced last year. Mr. Infantino will also visit the Technical Centre at the SFF headquarter and the Astroturf pitch at La Retraitre. Another highlight of his visit will be a football match where he is expected to join mixed teams of under-17 boys and girls at the Roche Caïman Astroturf.
Mr. Infantino was accompanied at State House by Deputy General Football, Mr. Mattias Graftström, Senior Football Advisor, Mr. Youri Djorkaeff, Director Member Associations Africa, Mr. Gelson Fernandos, Head of the President’s Office, Mr. Federico Raviglione, and FIFA Legend, Mr. Houssine Kharja.
Also present yesterday morning for the courtesy meeting was the Minister for Youth, Sports, and Family, Mrs. Marie-Céline Zialor, president of the Seychelles Football Federation, Mr. Elvis Chetty, Principal Secretary for Sports, Mr. Ralph Jean-Louis, Chief Executive of the Seychelles Football Federation, Mr. Denis Rose, and members of the Federation’s executive committee, Mrs. Sheila Mohideen.
State House News Alert, Seychelles