In another massive milestone for women football in Africa, the Sierra Leonian government and the Sierra Leone Football Association (SLFA) have jointly announced that both the men’s and women’s teams will now receive equal pay.
This is a step taken by the two to motivate more women to get into the game in the West African country.
Changing the perception that many have of women's football is now essential to ensure its development. The Confederation of African Football (CAF) Women's Football Strategy has provided a work plan for Member Associations to take their local football to the next level.
By upgrading the payments and bonuses of the senior women's national team to the level of its men's counterpart, Sierra Leone is making a healthy leap forward towards the fairness defended by the various bodies in charge of football.
This is a measure that can have a significant social impact, as the strategy emphasizes.
Indeed, in addition to harnessing the power of football to create a positive social impact on African women and girls, MAs must prioritize the use of football as a tool to educate young girls, empower and encourage participation.
With the invaluable contribution of the government, the SLFA led by Isha Johansen who also heads the Organizing Committee for Women's Football at CAF is accelerating the pace in the implementation of measures to promote women's football.
“In recent years, gender inclusion and equality have been one of the top priorities in global football,” Johansen told CAFOnline.com.
She added; “Despite the numerous challenges, Sierra Leone has faced in terms of developing our game, I am delighted that we have started to translate aspirations into actions.”
The decision to increase the bonuses for the Sierra Queens is retroactive and takes into account the national and international competitions played this year, including the UFOA Zone A women's tournament held at home and in which the Sierra Queens were eliminated in the group stage.
Women's football is gradually taking off and the results can be seen in Sierra Leone.
“As we all know, everything is about a process, and the SLFA can proudly boast of having a CAF female instructor, female referees and coaches. We also have the first female Head Coach in a men’s premier league category. These are all very significant steps on our journey towards full equality. We are changing the narrative,” Johansen further underscores.