THE Tanzania Premier League Board (TPLB ) said they will provide enough time for teams to regroup when the government declares the country is safe to resume sports activities.
Tanzania, like many other countries in the world, has suspended all sports events as a preventive measure to curb the fast spread of the coronavirus, which is affecting many people around the world.
On March 17th this year, the state through Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa, issued a 30- day break for all sport events and it is likely that when the recommended days are over, the government will assess the situation before making another announcement as to whether it is safe to recommence the games or not.
Speaking via a telephone interview, TPLB Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Almas Kasongo said they will wait for further government’s directives after the imposed 30 days are over.
“If they announce it is safe to restart sports, then as the board, we will provide ample time for teams trading in Mainland Premier League, First Division League (F DL) and Second Division League (SDL) to prepare,” he said.
He added that they will make sure that the period to be given to clubs will be friendly to all, so that their respective squads can regroup and start official preparations for their upcoming encounters.
“If the state sees it is not safe to go ahead with sport activities, then the secretariat of TPLB will meet to discuss the way forward and I will then announce to the public the decision of the meeting,” he said.
Furthermore, the TPLB boss said the issue of coronavirus is an emergency, meaning that nobody had an idea that it will have a big impact like what is happening at the moment.
Kasongo’s remarks came as a response to request by Simba SC Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Senzo Mazingiza, who had requested the TPLB to provide enough time for teams to regroup after the end of the current suspension period.
In another development, the Tanzania F ootball Federation (TF F ) said the outbreak of coronavirus has affected usual business of many football federations in many parts of the country.
Commenting on this was TFF Marketing Officer Aaron Nyanda, who said gate collections have not had such big impact since more than 70 per cent of league matches are played without many fans in the stadium.
“Here, only few games in our league have capacity to bring many people at the stadium, while most of them do attract few people. Teams which have potential to pull a lot of people do get enough money to help them run their activities well,” Nyanda noted.
He pointed out that Tanzania clubs have not hugely been affected by the suspension, saying they already planned to have a one month break for the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifiers and Africa Nations Championship (CHAN) finals, which were set to end on April 25th.
“Even if the coronavirus was not there, the league would have still be suspended for a period of one month to pave way for the 2021 AF CON qualifiers and CHAN finals as such, it is somehow an advantage for us," he said.