National, News

Cabinet approves $500,000 for Bright Stars

By Bida Elly David


Council of Ministers, on Friday, approved 500,000 United States dollars for South Sudan Football Association (SSFA) to sponsor activities of the national football team, the Bright Stars.

National Minister of Youth and Sports, Dr. Albino Bol Dhieu had tabled a financial request before the cabinet seeking support for Bright Stars as they prepare to face Senegal in the World Cup qualifier.

Tabling of the request before council of ministers subsequently became the last duty, Dr. Albino Bol Dhieu performed as National Minister of Youth and Sports, before his removal.

The South Sudan Bright Stars are due to face their group opponent Senegal’s Taranga Lion in the 2026 World Cup qualifier at Stade Me Abdoulaye Wade today, Saturday.

And it’s based on that background that Minister Albino asked the cabinet to approve a budget for the national team to be able to participate in the Cup qualifiers.

Information minister and government spokesperson, Michael Makuei Lueth, told the media shortly after Friday’s meeting that Albino underscored a number of financial crises facing the South Sudan Football Association.

“Reports from the bright stars indicate that they have started internal football competition and have a program of competing with other countries,” Makuei told reporters yesterday.

He noted that the Football Association, through the Ministry of Youth and Sports, requested the sum of $2,583,000 for their sports program, but that was reduced.

He added that the whole amount was considered but will be paid gradually as per the budget.

“The cabinet, as such, approved the sum of $500,000, and the rest will be released next year and 2025 effectively until it is covered,” Makuei stated.

Minister Makuei hinted that it is the role of the government to promote peace through sports across the country and globally.

Last week, Augustino Madut, the president of the SSFA, sounded pessimistic about the possibility of South Sudan going for the qualifying match against Senegal.

He decried that South Sudan’s senior men’s national team risks missing out on the next World Cup qualifiers due to financial difficulties at SSFA.

Madut said the team is facing several obstacles that could jeopardize their forthcoming World Cup qualifiers.

“There is a high chance that our national men’s team may miss the upcoming World Cup qualifiers against Senegal and Mauritania due to financial issues,” he decried.

“[There are only] six days remaining for us to be in Senegal, but up until now, the player’s tickets are not there because the federation has no money,” Gen. Madut. said at the SSFA headquarters last Friday when the association sealed a sponsorship agreement with Tristar Company.

The question of whether the association has money to face their rivals tomorrow, Saturday, is not certain, but reports revealed that the Bright Stars are already in Senegal.

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