GoG/GFF sign MoU to construct second football complex
– community to have 24hr access to mini pitches
History was created on Friday when the Guyana Football Federation (GFF) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Government of Guyana for the 30-year lease of 7.3 acres of land to construct a football facility at D’Urban Park, Georgetown.
This facility, which will be known as the ‘GFF D’Urban Park Football Complex’ is expected to accommodate an international quality full-size pitch, two mini-pitches and a new headquarters for the Federation.
The signing was done in the press room of the Office of the President by GFF
President Wayne Forde, and Minister of State Joseph Harmon, on behalf of the Government of Guyana (GoG).
Forde in brief remarks following the signing thanked the Government of Guyana and other football stakeholders, noting the significance of the moment: “Today marks a huge milestone for football in Guyana and a defining moment for the future of every young boy and girl who dreams of playing the game at the highest level. The importance of high-quality football pitches is inextricably linked to the quality of players we develop and the quality of our national teams. Without the right infrastructure, we cannot develop football. It’s as simple as that. We cannot improve standards; we cannot compete at the highest level of the sport.”
In stating that this is the “second major, groundbreaking and game-changing infrastructural project for football” in Guyana following the construction of the GFF’s National Training Centre at Providence, Forde said this facility will further the Executive Committee’s ongoing efforts to completely transform football in Guyana: “This project will help the GFF to increase participation in football, spot talent in its infancy stage, increase the player population, raise the quality of our football programmes, improve the image of the sport, enhance community cohesion and improve the health and well-being of our communities. It is one more giant step in the ongoing efforts of my Executive Committee to use our time in
office to lay a solid and lasting foundation for the sustainable development of football. This is a giant leap in our quest to qualify for the 2026 FIFA World Cup.” Harmon said this project is significant, as “the people of Guyana will have access to high-quality public infrastructure, which would allow for them to develop their talent as sportsmen and women.” In providing some perspective of the history of the agreement, Harmon said it was a mutual one between FIFA and the GoG: “When the President of FIFA visited Guyana he met with the President of Guyana, President David Granger, and the President of FIFA made a commitment to help Guyana achieve certain goals in so far as his organisation is concerned. Our President also committed to ensure what can be done at the level of the Government, that we will do so. This collaboration between the Government of Guyana and the Guyana Football Federation is testimony of that commitment which the two presidents made.”
The Minister emphasised that initiatives such as these are “important steps in our development” and public access to the facility is an important part of the agreement for both physical health and development of skills: “This activity of declaring the area for sport not only benefits the Guyana Football Federation but, in our negotiation, we insisted that the public must have access to these facilities, which I have asked the GFF to maintain. That is their corporate social responsibility to the citizens of that community particularly the young men of Lodge, West Ruimveldt, East Ruimveldt and communities that do not have real and proper playing facilities; that we will be able to maintain two public spaces where they can arrange games for their own use.”
This signing will pave the way for the commencement of construction, which is scheduled to be completed by 2021. The mini pitches are expected to be available to the community on a 24-hour basis.
Following the signing, sod-turning was done at the proposed site at D’Urban Park by GFF President Forde and Director of Sport Christopher Jones against an unveiling of a billboard on the site, Forde also presented an official FIFA match ball to Minister Harmon.