The Gambia Football Federation has finalized the recruitment of its Senior Management Staff at the National Technical Training Center and GFF Football Hotel in Yundum. The team has commenced work on November 1, 2017, following the successful outcome of their interview process.
The members of the SMT are: Lamin Sanneh, General Manager; Lamin Sanneh, Front Office & Accommodation Manager; Arret Njie-Jah, Food, Beverage & Banquet Manager; and Baboucarr Secka, Facilities Manager. The quartet are now putting together the necessary logistics with the official opening expected to be in December, 2017.
As part of the recruitment process, the four positions were advertised in the national papers on two separate occasions and in total a number of 16 applications were received as follows: Five for the position of General Manager; Five for the position of Food, Beverage & Banquet Manager; Three for the positions of Front Office & Accommodation and Facilities Managers each.
At an Emergency Executive Committee meeting of September 11, an interview panel was constituted, which includes Executive Committee members and the Senior Management Team of the GFF and the panel was chaired by Ebou Faye the second vice president. Three candidates were shortlisted for each of the categories and in total a number of 12 candidates went through a very rigorous process.
At the end of the interview, all twelve were graded separately by the members of the panel and the quartet were recommended for appointment and sent to the Emergency Exco for approval. Since the GFFH is a FIFA project, the final part of the recruitment process was the notification of the football world governing body, who have approved and gave the green light for their appointments.
Brief Profile of SMT Members
Lamin Sanneh, 51, has a wealth of experience in hotel management at the highest level and was involved in the setting up of Sindola Safari Lodge, which he turned into a vibrant income generating venture; he was the manager of the Hotel for 11 years.
He started his career at Sunwing Hotel as a waiter more than three decades ago after which he moved to Kairaba Beach Hotel and then Kololi Beach and Badala Park Hotel before returning to Kairaba Beach three years later and promoted to a Supervisor. He was later promoted to the Restaurant Manager of Kairaba Beach and again as Senior Restaurant Manager and Assistant Food and Beverage Manager. He later moved to Palm Grove Hotel as Food & Beverage Manager before he started his long association with Sindola Safari Lodge.
After eight years at Sindola, he moved to Senegambia Beach as Operations Manager and would later spend two years on international appointment in Nigeria in the food and beverage sector. Upon his return to The Gambia a year ago, he picked up employment with Cocoa Ocean Resort and Spa as the Food and Beverage Manager until his appointment by the GFFH. Sanneh had also worked with Gambia Electrical as Properties Manager for a year.
The Front Office and Accommodation, also Lamin Sanneh, started his hotel career at the Brikama Camping & Business Training School as a Receptionist/Lecturer after which he diverted fields and tutored at the Brikama Kabifita Lower Basic School for a year. He later moved to Sindola Safari Lodge as a Supervisor/Cashier and was later promoted to Assistant Front Office Manager. He later joined Dunes Resort Hotel as Assistant Front Office Manager for three years and then Seafront Resident Hotel as Front Office Manager for a year. Until his appointment by the GFFH, he was the Front Office Manager for Coconut Residence, a position he served in for three years.
The Food, Beverage and Banquet Manager, Arret Njie Jah, lives and breathes football. She also has more than three-decade practical experience of the hotel industry. Mrs Njie started her surgeon in the industry at Atlantic Hotel as a waitress before moving to Senegambia Beach Hotel and later Kairaba Beach Hotel as Restaurant Manager for nine years.
She later joined Sunset Beach Hotel and the Sultan Bar & Restaurant as the Managress before joining Jerma Beach as the Restaurant Managress and the Assistant Food & Beverage Manager for three years. She last worked at the Fajara Mini Market as the Managress for four years.
Facilities Manager, Baboucarr Secka, has a BA in Sports Management from the prestigious Universidad Deportiva del Sur of Venezuela. He was a qualified teacher and worked with the Ministry of Basic and Secondary Education as a classroom teacher before securing a Gambia government scholarship to pursue his degree programme in Venezuela.
Upon his return to The Gambia in 2014, Secka, who would manage all GFF facilities including the 10 fields that the Federation is on the verge of developing across the country, was employed by the Ministry of Youth and Sports. He worked under the Directorate of Planning as a Sports Coordinator for the West Coast Region. Upon his graduation, Secka, who is fluent in Spanish, was employed as a Language Facilitator for six months by the Universidad Deportiva.
The President of the GFF, Lamin Kabba Bajo, the Executive Committee and the SMT of the Federation welcomed the GFFH Management Team to the football family on Thursday when they paid him a courtesy call. He assured them of his maximum support at all times but hastens to add that both he and the entire Exco expect professionalism from them.
The General Manager assured of his undivided loyalty in ensuring that the Hotel attains its goal. He solicited the support and cooperation of every Gambian, noting that the Hotel belongs to all Gambians and not the GFF alone. “We will all go one day and leave the structure in place so if this place bears fruits; it’s not for Kabba, me or the GFF but for all Gambians.”
Once again, the GFF wishes to congratulate the GFFH Management Team on their deserved appointment and assured them of our support at all times.