His Majesty The King granted as Royal Soelra a monthly salary of Nu 20,000 to each member of the women’s national football team beginning next month. The Office of the Gyalpoi Zimpon, which conveyed the Royal Command to the Bhutan Football Federation (BFF), stated the financial support granted to the women’s national team is envisioned to provide equal opportunities for women players to strengthen the women’s national team and enable it to excel in its performance internationally, according to the BFF. At present, each member of the team receives a salary of Nu 10,000 from the BFF. The Royal Soelra will be an addition to what BFF is presently paying each member. The women’s national team has up to 30 players, who are trained by the BFF and encouraged to remain professional players. According to the President of the BFF, Ugen Tsechup Dorji, the monthly remuneration will go a long way in enabling women football players to pursue the sport professionally and also serve to attract young girls to the sport. “His Majesty’s gift insures the future of women in football. This is an opportunity as well as a responsibility for Bhutan Football Federation to take women’s football to a higher level. We commit ourselves wholeheartedly in fulfilling this endeavor,” he said. Meanwhile, the men’s national football team, which also has 30 players, began receiving an additional monthly salary of Nu 20,000 this year with financial support from the Druk Holdings and Investment. This was in addition to the Nu 10,000 that they already receive from BFF. According to the BFF, His Majesty’s timely and gracious gift has meant that in Bhutan, men and women’s football can progress with equal support. At a time when the lack of support for women’s support is an issue globally, the Royal Soelra sets precedent for Bhutan to be a forerunner. “The Soelra from the Throne will boost the morale of upcoming young female players and has inspired the Bhutan Football Federation to work harder to take the sport of football in the country to newer heights for both men and women,” states BFF.
Staff Reporter from Thimphu