Despite criticism and pleas to reconsider, Arsenal have gone ahead and renewed their sponsorship deal with Rwanda’s tourism board.
The Arsenal Supporters Trust has accused the Gunners of having ‘lost its moral compass in its desire to maximise revenues.’
That’s based on Arsenal doing business with a country that has such a poor human rights record. The United Nations and the UK Foreign Office have all raised concerns, with claims that critics of President Kagame have been disappearing and/or being murdered.
One Government in Europe has threatened to stop their funding to the African nation due to how much money they are paying us. They rightly question why the UK for example is providing 60 million to help the country only for then 10 million to be spent on having their name on a football club’s sleeve and round a stadium. That’s 10 million that could contribute to much needed education or hospitals.
Arsenal’s official stance has always been that they are ‘working to challenge perceptions and Rwanda’s story of culture, heritage and transition, as well as raising awareness of the country being a luxury holiday destination.’
One year into the partnership, tourism from Europe increased by 22 percent.
It shows Mr Kagame’s action plan is working, associating himself with PSG, basketball, cycling and being a constant on social media to present a positive image to the West.
It’s called Sports Washing.
No different to Saudi Arabia for years now paying to host major wrestling and boxing events to direct publicity away from a poor human rights record.
So unfortunately, this goes on all the time.
How many of us will watch a World Cup in Qatar knowing full well the abuse of migrant workers (including deaths).
Why are England not boycotting playing in a country where being homosexual is illegal and women are suppressed?
That’s not to say because others do one thing we have to copy.
Of course, Arsenal could for moral reasons not work with Rwanda, but it would invite lots of questions of why they turn their cheeks concerning other nations politics.
Ideally politics should be separate from sport, but it’s got to be one or the other.
You either allow the two or mix or you don’t. You can’t pick and choose which nations’ ethos you agree with.
Who makes that decision?
What is it based on?
For example, many want Arsenal to be noble and take a moral stance against one Rwanda, yet this is the same business who distanced themselves away from Ozil’s comments when he criticised China’s treatment of Uighurs.
If you don’t want to get involved in political issues with China, then you can’t with Rwanda…
What’s your opinion Gooners?
Have the Club Lost its Moral Compass?
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