FRANCISTOWN: The 20-year-old Tanzanian international Iddi Banka, who signed with ECCO City Greens at the beginning of the 2015/2016 Debswana First Division North season, wants to go back home.
Banka signed from FC United in Tanzania in the off-season and was involved in ECCO’s pre-season preparations. He also took part in the Francistown Buy ‘n Build pre season tournament. Banka last played for ECCO in their week two game when they suffered a 2-0 defeat away to Tsabothe coming on as a second half substitute.
ECCO’s public relations officer, Ontiretse Israel said Banka raised a number of issues including his religious belief but confirmed that he was paid.
“Iddi has a lot of concerns; sometimes he is homesick and the next is a problem of his Muslim belief he feels some things are not done in the manner that suits his religious practices. He is a young boy and he is a great talent, but he does not turn up for training.
“We were expecting a lot from him that is why we continued paying him as agreed, but now we have reached a point where we cannot afford to pay for the services we are not getting. We have tried to address his issues and we spoke to him but still he does not train,” Israel said.
However, Banka said ECCO have no money to pay him and as thus he wants to go back home. “I have told them (ECCO management) that I have a plan to go home. The team doesn’t have money and sometimes my salary is not paid. I have left my family in Tanzania and they are looking up to me to send them money every month. I am failing to do that so it is better I just go back home,” he said.
“I am a footballer and I want to keep fit. The reason why I did not train is because I had caught flu and that is why I am not playing. I have no problems except for the money issue. All I want to do now is go back home and find a team. I don’t think I will come back to ECCO again.” However, he said he would stay if he gets another offer.
“I like staying here. I am open to offers if I could get a trial with another team and they want me I will stay, as long as I am paid and I help support my family back home.”