Bolivia President, His Excellency Evo Morales has joined many advocates in the fight against discrimination, ranging from economic discrimination and trade discrimination. This time, he has moved from his usual critical viewpoint of the Bush administration to football. He is reported to have urged the Soccer legend, Pele to fight FIFA’s ban on international games on higher attitudes, areas above 8, 200 feet.
This ban highly affects the Andean countries of which Bolivia is part of. The President rightly advocates against this decision which discriminates against the Andean Countries and people in such region. Even though the decision is intended to protect the health of players who need a lot of oxygen in the field of play which is thinly available in such attitudes, Morales sees this ban as discriminatory, which an international criminal offence.
The decision affects people in many ways. Football is a source of employment for players and other people in the field like coaches (as we have done to employ a foreign coach, Stephen Constantine at the expense of our local based seeds). Football games played in big cities with high population also bring revenue in gate collections and advertisements. Football is therefore a source of income and a vehicle for removing income poverty of nations. As a result of the ban, all the benefits that come with football in Andean countries (of course plus prostitution) and other countries in high attitude will be removed. No wonder Mr. Morales must be supported in this fight.
However, let me pin point some other facts that he might have missed. Games played in such areas highly risks the lives of players, of whom he presidents over. If they all die, who would play the game for the country to earn some economy? This is why I would urge the governments (Bolivia inclusive) to construct stadiums in attitudes which are ideal for player’s healthy lives.