#Article (Archive)

The WAFU Cup

Dec 5, 2008, 6:20 AM

The WAFU Cup, which had been in the doldrums for about one decade has been revived, with Nigeria hosting the maiden edition in the revived series in the DeltaState of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Since November 28, football giants in West Africa have been battling for the coveted trophy. And on December10, one of them will be crowned the kings of West African football. Long before the WAFU Cup became moribund, it had served as a breeding ground for soccer superstars. Most of the players who represented their nations at the World Cup went on to be players of distinction across the world. Its eclipse was therefore a setback for football in the region. But we are glad it is back.

And since it kicked off about a week ago, Nanama Keita has been keeping the Gambian nation abreast of developments in the Delta, reporting on every twist and turn of the tournament. He does not only just report on the matches, he also covers matters off the pitch. When the Gambian diplomat in Nigeria visited the Gambian camp in the Delta, Nanama Keita was there to tell us about it. It looks if nothing escapes his eagles' eyes.
That is how as it should be. A journalist must be vigilant, keeping his or her eyes wide open for any happening - positive or negative - in their surroundings. And are obliged to report on them if they are newsworthy. With Nanama, he smells out news and knows how to report it in a lively fashion.

For us in The Gambia, we owe our knowledge of what is happening at the WAFU Cup tournament to Nanama Keita. When the camp was despondent, he reported it. And since then, we presume that the authorities have done something about it. The team seems to be upbeat, as they reportedly in good shape and with a better mentality for the battles ahead. Perhaps if Nanama had not drawn the attention of the authorities to the growing despair in the camp with his incisive report, our team might have already crashed out of the tournament. This should be a lesson to every reporter that we should not be afraid to report the truth - it helps solve a problem even if it might inconvenience a few people.

The WAFU Cup offers the U-20 yet another opportunity to showcase Gambian football - and even sell themselves to football scouts. So the talk about our boys yearning to come back home for the Tobaski celebration will not do them any good. Winning the WAFU Cup will be the greatest salibo the will offer to the nation.Boys, bring home the trophy!