Locked out: Fans fault SSFA for higher fees in Bright Stars game

Locked out: Fans fault SSFA for higher fees in Bright Stars game

The South Sudan Football Association (SSFA) is facing a backlash after prescribing what is considered a higher entry fee for tomorrow’s FIFA World Cup 2026 qualifiers between the South Sudan and Sudan men’s teams.

The game is expected to coincide with the reopening of the Juba National Stadium, which will be graced by President Salva Kiir and FIFA President Giani Infantino.

According to SSFA, VIPs will part with SSP100,000, first class occupants with SSP75,000, second class occupants with SSP30,000, and third-class occupants with SSP10,000 SSP in the game that will be played tomorrow in Juba.

However, some of the citizens criticized the charges, arguing that the SSFA was unfair for coming up with charges for a match that should be treated as a national event.

In an interview with The City Review, Kuol Nyang, an ardent fan of the Bright Stars, appealed to the association to make entrance free.

“Those charges of SSP100,000 and SSP75,000 are not necessary; they are supposed to be free because our president, Salva Kiir, is going to inaugurate our stadium, which is a pride to us since it is now at world standard,” Kuol said.

He added that the citizens are going through hardships due to salary delays and the high cost of living, which has limited purchasing power.

“No salaries for civil servants and organized forces for long; these may stop most of us from joining our president in support of our now modern field,” he said.

He added that many people wanted to watch the national team, but the charges may stop them from doing so.

Michael Mawa, a resident of Hai Malakal, urged the association to reduce the ticket price y to SSP1000, adding that this will encourage many people to watch the game.

“We need the football association to also allow those who may go there with small money, like $1,000, to watch the game,” he said.

He added that the reopening of the stadium is a national event for which all the citizens will be given that freedom. 

“We see the reopening of the stadium as well as that game like a national event, and there is a need for the association to reduce the fees for the tickets or give some of us who do not have money to enter for free and watch the games,” he said.

For Jacob Aguma, a resident close to the stadium, he will not be able to watch the game due to lack of money despite staying a stone throw away from the stadium.

“I will be hearing the noise, although I am very close. I am unable to watch without money, and using SSP10,000 for one game in this hard time is not possible. We are focusing on how to get food as things become harder,” he said.