By DOH JAMES SONKEY IN YAOUNDE
Appointed last May 24, 2017 by the President of the Republic, Paul Biya, former long serving President of the Confederation of African Football, CAF, Issa Hayatou as Board Chair and long serving national coach of Cameroon’s female football squad, Carl Enow Ngachu as General Manager are pioneers to give life to the National Football Academy created by on September 25, 2014.
It is worth noting that President Biya made the promise of creating a football academy on February 10, 2010 in his Youth Day address and four years later, he created the National Football Academy and tasked it “to initiate and technically prepare the youths for high-level football, to prepare trainers who will handle theoretical and practical issues in football, to develop national expertise on football related issues, to collect, preserve and give out documentation related to football and pursue credible research on football and related issues.”
The National Football Academy is composed of three specialized divisions; the division in charge of football training, the division in charge of professional and technical development of football and the division in charge of research and documentation on football.
By appointing two national heavy weights in football, Carl Enow Ngachu and Issa Hayatou some months ahead of Cameroon’s hosting of the African Nations Cup, the President of the Republic is certainly signaling to the newly appointed that there is no time to waste.
Born on the 21st of February 1975 in Manyu Division, South West Region of Cameroon, Carl Enow Ngachu took up the management of female football in 2004 and thanks to his extra efforts, contributed to the growth of the National Football team. He rose to be the most celebrated Head Coach of the Women’s National Football team after propelling the team to the second position in Africa at the end of the 2017 Women African Football organized in Yaoundé.
In 2008, Coach Enow Ngachu also managed the junior team, the under 20 and the under 17 female squads despite the fact that there was no allocated budget. The former player of Sable of Batie and Victoria United, two clubs of the Cameroon elite league, rapidly embraced the career of coach and is holder of a CAF « C » licence.
At 35, he was also the Technical Director of the Njalla Quan Sports Academy, a Limbe based football team. He manages Eding Sports of the Lekie as a part time job.
On his part, Issa Hayatou, the new Board Chair of ANAFOOT is a man with a rich football background. The 70 year-old was born in Garoua in the North Region of Cameroon.
He served as the President of the Confederation of African Football (CAF), the fifth since the creation of CAF. Hayatou was named Secretary General of the Cameroon Football Association, at the age of 28 and 12 years later he became the Chairman of the Football Association.
He was appointed into the CAF Executive Committee in 1987 and evolved to CAF President in 1988 – a position he hold till March 2017.His contribution to football internationally has impacted world football .He was candidate in the 2002 FIFA presidency but lost to Sepp Blatter by 139 votes to 56. In March 2017, Ahmad Ahmad won 34 of the 54 votes to replace Issa Hayatou as the present CAF President.