The Congress – the most important cog in the governing body’s wheel – is the gathering of Oceania’s football family. With all 11 Member Associations in attendance, the Congress makes decisions relating to OFC’s governing statutes and the methods by which they are implemented and applied.
It also approves the annual report and accounts, and holds elections, most notably for the OFC President and the OFC Executive Committee.
January’s meeting is the elective Congress, held once every four years, and is set to decide who will become OFC President for the next term.
Papua New Guinea Football Association (PNGFA) President David Chung is the Acting President of OFC and will preside over the Congress.
FIFA President Joseph S. Blatter and FIFA General Secretary Jerome Valcke are expected to attend.
OFC General Secretary Tai Nicholas says American Samoa is an appropriate nation in which to determine the future direction of OFC and that it continues the Confederation’s strategy of holding congresses throughout all of the Member Associations.
The country suffered tragedy in 2009 when it was struck by a devastating tsunami that ripped through the Football Federation of American Samoa (FFAS) headquarters in Pago Pago. But the federation has bounced back well from that massive setback and football is making great strides in the region.
FFAS’s previous long-term development plan has just reached the end of its four-year cycle and President Iuli Alex Godinet says its objectives have been met.
“In the past four years, we’ve made leaps and bounds in achieving most of the current targets,” he says. “I am extremely confident that our new development plan will be targeted with the same determination.”
The FFAS headquarters at Pago Park were badly damaged during the tsunami but much of this has been repaired thanks to phases II and III of the country’s FIFA Goal Project – an initiative by FIFA to help national associations around the world improve their facilities. The playing surface at the ground has also been improved and extensions made to the FFAS building.
The completion of the work will be celebrated during the Congress with an official inauguration ceremony, overseen by FIFA President Joseph S. Blatter and Governor of American Samoa Togiola Tulafono.
American Samoa last hosted an OFC meeting in November 2009 when the Executive Committee convened there shortly after the tsunami.