July 03, 2020, 12:58:38 PM

Author Topic: FIFA appoints normalisation committee for Trinidad and Tobago football  (Read 16493 times)

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Offline sjahrain

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Re: FIFA appoints normalisation committee for Trinidad and Tobago football
« Reply #90 on: March 22, 2020, 07:27:22 AM »
Every turn you take...there are parasites waitng for you..m :banginghead:

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Patrick steps down after legal threats from TTFA lawyers
« Reply #91 on: March 22, 2020, 09:16:43 AM »
Patrick steps down after legal threats from TTFA lawyers
By Ryan Bachoo (T&T Guardian)


A dramatic week in T&T football ended with FIFA appointed supervisor Tyril Patrick writing to the global governing body on Saturday and turning down the position to run domestic football affairs until the FIFA appointed normalization committee is named and assembled. This came less than 24 hours after the T&T Football Association’s (TTFA) legal team led by Matthew Gayle and Dr Emir Crowne wrote to Patrick on Friday in a final warning in a letter threatening legal action.

The three-page legal letter signed by Gayle, obtained by Guardian Media Sports told Patrick, the current TTFA Finance manager, “the constitution of the TTFA makes no allowance for the appointment of yourself or any other person to ‘oversee’ the day to day affairs of the TTFA as the FIFA letter purports.”

In saying that the FIFA letter, which asked Patrick to oversee the day to day running of local football, is of no legal effect, the TTFA’s lawyers also threatened to return force should there be any repercussions to local football. “Any attempts to hold football in Trinidad to ransom with threats of further and/or more punitive steps will also be met with forceful resistance by those who have retained us,” the legal letter read. It called upon the TTFA finance officer to distance himself from taking further steps towards acting on his FIFA appointment.

FIFA's letter from Secretary General Fatma Samoura stated: Under these serious circumstances, and in accordance with article 8 paragraph 2 of the Fifa statutes (which foresees that executive bodies of member associations may, under exceptional circumstances, be removed from office by the Fifa Council in consultation with the relevant confederation and replaced by a normalisation committee for a specific period of time), the Bureau of the Council decided, on March 17, to appoint a normalisation committee for the TTFA.

While Patrick was given until 8 am on Monday to respond, he wrote on Saturday morning to the TTFA’s attorney stating, “I would like to confirm via this email that I am no longer the interim manager at TTFA. I am no longer accepting the appointment and I have informed FIFA of my decision.”

His decision was lauded by former FIFA vice president Jack Warner who told Guardian Media Sports FIFA was out to use Patrick. Warner said, “I think what Patrick did, in my humble view, is the respectful thing of not taking up FIFA’s bait and allowing himself to be used and I admire the young man. I don’t know him, but I admire him now more than ever because he refused to allow himself to be a pawn or a tool to be used by FIFA and their agents.”

Patrick’s rescinding of the appointment left the question as to who would run the daily affairs of the TTFA after a dramatic week which saw FIFA disband the local governing body via letter dated March 17, and addressed to the TTHFA's general secretary Ramesh Ramdhan in its move towards installing a normalization committee.

Ramdhan confirmed to Guardian Media Sports yesterday that he can go to the office because he was not removed by FIFA. The elected members along with the board of the TTFA were removed. Ramdhan is the head of the secretariat and had been told to report to Patrick by the FIFA but he refrained from doing so.

Less than a day after the announcement was made by the FIFA that it was sending in a normalization committee, the TTFA president William Wallace announced on Wednesday that it was taking the matter to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).

Wallace said on Wednesday that, "We took a while to get over the shock, it was total disbelief. Since then we have pooled our resources together and have decided that this is injustice, it is disrespect, it shows some political play going on here to protect, I don't know who, but clearly, this is unprecedented when you look at what those committees are set up to do. It is in cases of political interference, political turmoil, democratic processes such as elections. Our elections were supervised by the FIFA and CONCACAF, so there were no issues with the elections, but now they are saying because of the same financial deficiency that we pointed out to them when they were here, they are now using that as a reason, but we have gone beyond that, we have put things in place."

Ramdhan said certain procedures needed to take place before the matter reached CAS. After the TTFA issued a letter to the FIFA this week, it is understood the local body was not happy with its response and has since written to the FIFA once again, giving them until 8:30am on Monday to respond.

Ramdhan said, “We have to follow certain protocols before we take the matter to CAS. We were not satisfied with FIFA’s response after they took three days, so we have again written them and asked them to deal with the substantive matter of the letter.” The formal proceedings to take the matter to CAS could start as early as tomorrow judging on FIFA’s response to the TTFA.

Gayle's letter also stated that: "The proper membership of the executive of the TTFA therefore consists of the following persons: William Wallace, Clynt Taylor, Susan Joseph-Warrick, Joseph Sam-Phillip, Kieron Edwards, Richard Quan Chan, Rayshawn Mars, Desmond Alfred, Dwayne Thomas, Brent Sancho, Jamyila Muhammad, Phullip Fraser, Joseph Taylor, Keith Look Loy (colectively the "Duly Elected Executive).

As such, the normalization committee was appointed to run the TTFA’s daily affairs, establish a debt repayment plan, review and amend the TTFA Statutes to ensure their compliance with the FIFA Statutes and organise and conduct elections of a new TTFA Executive Committee for a four-year mandate.

On March 15, the TTFA closed its office and told staff to stay at home for one week because of the Covid-19 pandemic and report to work on March 23. A decision was also taken to suspend all national football team training and screening sessions until further notice.
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Online Tallman

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Re: FIFA appoints normalisation committee for Trinidad and Tobago football
« Reply #92 on: March 22, 2020, 05:53:05 PM »
WATCH: AC Port of Spain's Michael Awai calls for common sense to prevail and help solve the rift between the TTFA and FIFA.

<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/_LQdu3AGkow" target="_blank" class="new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/_LQdu3AGkow</a>
The Conquering Lion of Judah shall break every chain.

Online Tallman

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Re: FIFA appoints normalisation committee for Trinidad and Tobago football
« Reply #93 on: March 22, 2020, 06:38:48 PM »
Former GFF normalisation chairman Clinton Urling: T&T football will benefit
By Gyasi Merrique (T&T Guardian)


Former chairman of the 2014 FIFA Normalisation Committee appointed in Guyana, Clinton Urling, says that there are some things certainly not normal about FIFA’s recent takeover of the T&T Football Association (TTFA).

In an extensive interview with Guardian Media Sports on Friday, Urling drew attention to the fact that FIFA had appointed the TTFA’s Finance manager, Tyril Patrick, as interim manager of the organisation.

“They have to do exactly what they did in Guyana’s case. You have to bring impartial voices, impartial vision to this matter to bare. Folks who have not been a part of the problem for want of a better word,” said Urling.

Patrick has since declined FIFA’s offer having been advised by the legal representatives of the disbanded administration not to accept FIFA’s request.

A source within the TTFA has confirmed that Patrick has been the association’s financial manager for at least the last three years, hired in 2017 under former president David John-Williams, who was replaced on November 24.

Upon entering office, new TTFA president William Wallace and his administration claimed to have found over TT$50 million dollars in debt incurred by their predecessors.

In T&T’s case, FIFA noted with great concern that a recent fact-finding visit “to assess, together with an independent auditor, the financial situation of TTFA”, uncovered “extremely low overall financial management methods, combined with massive debt, have resulted in the TTFA facing a very real risk of insolvency and illiquidity.”

FIFA concluded that the situation required that corrective measures be applied with urgency.

Wallace’s administration has since vociferously claimed that well before that FIFA/CONCACAF fact-finding team arrived in February, it acknowledged and addressed the association’s lack of financial best practices in writing to FIFA, emphasising that these deficiencies existed before he was voted into office. On arriving in T&T, the visiting contingent was presented with a detailed audit of the accounts as well as what the new TTFA called a detailed debt-eradication proposal to fix the situation.

Urling also noted that while FIFA possesses broad powers to intervene in the administrative affairs of any member association under “exceptional circumstances”, he questions FIFA’s timing with respect to T&T.

“I know FIFA has the authority to set up these normalisation committees and article 8.2 gives them broad powers to do it. Sometimes we forget that the member associations are creatures of FIFA and the member association succumbs to the rules and regulations of the statutes of FIFA,” Urling said, before adding, “But what I’ve read that for me seems to be an anomaly, is that the Trinidad federation recently held elections and a new body took over.

“I assume that FIFA would have given that new body a year or so to assess the situation and see if the situation was getting better. So, I don’t know if a normalisation committee was warranted in this case.”

Whenever FIFA sees a need to intervene in the administrative affairs of one of its member associations, it almost always cites one or a combination of two statutes which guide the operations of all its affiliate members.

Article 8 of FIFA’s statutes, in accordance with which it made its decision to descend upon the TTFA on March 17, is thought to deal specifically with the conduct of bodies, officials and others.

The FIFA Council’s email correspondence from its secretary general Fatma Samoura to the TTFA, more specifically cited paragraph two of Article 8, which states that once FIFA deems that ‘exceptional circumstances’ exist within any member association’s execution of its business, it is well within its right to remove the executive of that association and install a normalisation committee.

FIFA Statutes – General Provisions

1 All bodies and officials must observe the Statutes, regulations, decisions and Code of Ethics of FIFA in their activities.

2 Executive bodies of member associations may under exceptional circumstances be removed from office by the Council in consultation with the relevant confederation and replaced by a normalisation committee for a specific period of time.

3 Every person and organisation involved in the game of football is obliged to observe the Statutes and regulations of FIFA as well as the principles of fair play. Nine official languages.

Of the ten or more times that FIFA has appointed normalisation committees in member association countries within the last five years, it has more often than not, wielded either Articles 8 or 14 as its rod of correction.

Where the circumstances are more egregious, that is, where constitutional or political discrepancies exist, FIFA can take similar action in accordance with another piece of literature, Article 14 paragraph 1(a).

FIFA Statutes – Membership

1 Member associations have the following obligations:

a) to comply fully with the Statutes, regulations, directives and decisions of FIFA bodies at any time as well as the decisions of the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) passed on appeal on the basis of Article 57 paragraph 1 of the FIFA Statutes.

It is instructive to note that, while neither of these articles defines exactly what may dictate FIFA’s action, only when that action is taken does the Council usually outline what prompted it.

FIFA’s reliance on this Normalisation Committee remedy has become more and more apparent within recent times. In fact, within the past ten years, there have been more than a dozen cases around the world. A quick study of some of these cases suggests that there is no real consistency to the circumstances pre-dating the set-up of bodies tasked with normalisation and or reform.

However, in most of the instances where FIFA draws upon Articles 14.1 (a) in particular, there usually seems to be instances of political unrest or interference, constitutional collapse or electoral manipulation within the member association.

FIFA in Ghana, Egypt, Uruguay

For example, when a normalisation committee was appointed in Ghana in August 2018 it was as a result of rampant corruption throughout the hierarchy of the Ghana Football Association with charges against several members including the then president of the association.

In August 2019 in Egypt, a normalisation committee was appointed to steer the Egyptian FA following the sudden resignation of its entire board after that country’s elimination from the African Cup of Nations.

And after a FIFA committee was appointed in Uruguay in August 2018, it was in response to, “particularly the fact that the electoral process for the position of AUF president is not in accordance with the requirements of transparency as outlined in the FIFA and CONMEBOL statutes.”

FIFA’s NC functions as the receiver

Urling, a Guyanese entrepreneur and business owner, noted that no two cases may be identical to T&T’s, or Guyana’s situation at the time of his appointment in 2014 on a two-year mandate but he stated that the work of any normalisation committee is generally a standard operation.

“When the normalisation committee comes in, it functions as the receiver in accounting terms. The head of that committee he or she assumes the role as the CEO of the association or what you all an Executive Director to ensure that the organisation runs in a certain way and sets up systems and processes which are what the new executive will inherit.”

In Guyana, constitutionally due elections had repeatedly been delayed as in-fighting within the various levels of football administration took hold. His normalisation committee apart from managing the day-to-day running of the country’s football was tasked with amending the then constitution of the GFF one and to organise elections according to the new constitution.

Constitutional reform will form a part of the TTFA’s normalisation committee and the overall mandate does not differ significantly.

FIFA has tasked it with the following:

- to run the TTFA’s daily affairs;

- to establish a debt repayment plan that is implementable by the TTFA;

- to review and amend the TTFA Statutes (and other regulations where necessary) and to ensure their compliance with the FIFA Statutes and requirements before duly submitting them for approval to the TTFA Congress;

- to organise and to conduct elections of a new TTFA Executive Committee for a four-year mandate.

TTFA faces ban from FIFA family

Having also taken issue with some of FIFA’s decisions and even going as far as to question the political motive of FIFA, former FIFA vice president Jack Warner told Guardian Media Sports that the development was still an indictment on the state of football in the country. Warner stated that it was the lowest point for the sport and “the end of the rope”.

Urling agrees but says that the situation should not be looked upon as all doom and gloom.

“It’s the point before the same FIFA says ‘you are no longer a part of the FIFA family’ or bans the entire member association. But I think the normalisation committee throughout T&T should be seen as an opportunity, a hope that things could and will get better.

“If you look at Guyana now, you see a federation that’s flourishing. You still see some pockets of issues obviously but the whole organisation turned around and I think for T&T a similar occurrence will or could happen.”

Re-iterating that it is FIFA’s general practice to appoint persons with no close ties to the sport or the particular issues facing it, Urling forewarned against any deviation from the norm.

“It is essential that individuals are selected that the entire football fraternity has trust in, believes in their management competencies and capabilities.”

He added that once the committee operates transparently with regular input from all of the sport’s stakeholders across the entire normalisation process, football should be the winner at the end of FIFA’s prescribed period of engagement.

“Even the executive body that just got replaced has a chance to come back at the end of the normalisation process. As much as they may think that the process is unfair, support the process, maybe in a year or two let’s say the same group runs again and wins again, they come into a situation where there are new processes in place and without that noose of debt around their neck. They can say ‘give us a chance, we did not lose the last election and were not replaced because we weren’t the problem.”
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Offline theworm2345

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Re: FIFA appoints normalisation committee for Trinidad and Tobago football
« Reply #94 on: March 22, 2020, 07:02:14 PM »

“If you look at Guyana now, you see a federation that’s flourishing. You still see some pockets of issues obviously but the whole organisation turned around and I think for T&T a similar occurrence will or could happen.”

Let me just say that this is complete bullshit, the GFF is an absolute trainwreck.  A few years ago they presented this 5 year plan, despite being broke.  So far, none of it has come to fruition.
https://www.stabroeknews.com/2017/05/27/sports/gff-present-five-year-strategic-plan-todays-congress/
https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=285618398916605&external_log_id=541f14c00ae3fe767d0eb53d5f250956

The GFF completely bankrupted itself to get to the Gold Cup by using almost all foreign-born players, and still needed a clerical error by Barbados to do so.  They were so bankrupt that they had to cut their domestic league season in half (90 matches reduced to 45), and at the end were playing these domestic league matches on their own GFF pitch in the middle of the day during the week, because they apparently didn't have the money to use the community pitches around the country that they usually use.  On top of that, they do not regularly hold the domestic league and, even pre-corona virus, it had been over a year since the previous league season had started.

To top it off, as I pointed out at the time, Guyana finished their Gold Cup with less Guyana-born players on the pitch than their opponent that day -- as T&T had Aubrey David on the pitch at the time.  They may well have made their money back in Gold Cup revenue, but so far it hasn't shown domestically.  But I guess in this clown's estimation, that is flourishing.
« Last Edit: March 22, 2020, 07:07:36 PM by theworm2345 »

Offline pull stones

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Re: FIFA appoints normalisation committee for Trinidad and Tobago football
« Reply #95 on: March 23, 2020, 12:54:59 AM »
i'm very wary of this guyanese bloke, i think he's in someone's pocket as you can't trust none of these hungry third world people as we see with our own football fraternity who's pleading for cooler heads and working with fifa for the greater good, but what greater good could come from an obvious coup?

i say the only chance we have is to take them to court and even though some said it would make things worst, but in my opinion nothing could be worst than the last three years under mad man DJW the sell out saboteur.

there is a very old saying that we're all familiar with, there's a first time for everything, and just maybe we could be the classic case for the books like rove vs wade, and our case could set the precedent for the world to follow. so i say go for broke, and if we lose appeal, and if we lose that then to hell with it, bring on the ban.

Offline Tiresais

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Re: FIFA appoints normalisation committee for Trinidad and Tobago football
« Reply #96 on: March 23, 2020, 05:23:25 AM »
Guyana is a bloody basket case, it's almost a poster for what we don't want. Their league is a shambles, sometimes propped up by local big men playing/actually being a politician.

Offline theworm2345

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Re: FIFA appoints normalisation committee for Trinidad and Tobago football
« Reply #97 on: March 23, 2020, 05:43:45 AM »
Guyana is a bloody basket case, it's almost a poster for what we don't want. Their league is a shambles, sometimes propped up by local big men playing/actually being a politician.
I think you're thinking of Ronnie Brunswijk in Suriname, all of the match data from Guyana is online from the past couple of seasons (sadly putting Pro League to shame) and I am unaware of any cases of this there...but regardless it is very much a shambles off the pitch.
« Last Edit: March 23, 2020, 05:50:24 AM by theworm2345 »

Offline pull stones

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Re: FIFA appoints normalisation committee for Trinidad and Tobago football
« Reply #98 on: March 23, 2020, 01:33:27 PM »
WATCH: AC Port of Spain's Michael Awai calls for common sense to prevail and help solve the rift between the TTFA and FIFA.

<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/_LQdu3AGkow" target="_blank" class="new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/_LQdu3AGkow</a>
did anybody listen to this arrogant clueless bastard calling the normalization a welcome intervention, can you believe these people?? no wonder steven hart got fired with not as much as a media frenzy.

as it stands I’m not surprised this fat pig bastard could have walked into the administration and turned every thing topsey turvey and still gain 20 votes in the last election, I’m sure this awai fella voted for the fat boss. the people with a say in that country is very mentally unstable and purposefully destructive, and if left unchecked would mash up Trinidad and Tobago with their madness.
« Last Edit: March 23, 2020, 01:37:15 PM by pull stones »

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TTFA gets outstanding support from members
« Reply #99 on: March 23, 2020, 06:42:28 PM »
TTFA gets outstanding support from members
By Walter Alibey & Nigel Simon (T&T Guardian)


The T&T Football Association's (TTFA) stance to fight against the implementation of a Normalisation Committee to govern the sport of football here is being supported by some of its members.

On Monday, the embattled football association which is led by William Wallace was bombarded by letters of support from the Northern Football Association, the Secondary Schools Football League (SSFL), of which Wallace was once the president, the T&T Super League, the T&T Football Referees Association (T&TFRA) and the T&T American Youth Soccer Organization (TTAYSO).

However, some members of the Super League camp, which is being represented by TTFA board member Keith Look Loy, said they are not in support of the football association stance to go against, the world governing body for the sport- FIFA which issued a letter last Tuesday (March 17) indicating that the elected officers have been removed from office and it will send a Normalisation Committee to govern T&T football which has been struggling with mounting debt and it appears there's no solution of solving it.

However, president Wallace and his executive which was elected into office on November 24, 2019, has hired attorneys Matthew G W Gayle and Dr Emir Crowne to challenged the decision and file a pre-action protocol in the Court of Arbitration for Sports (CAS) in Switzerland.

This new development has led to mixed views from different quarters of the public, including the members of the Super League, who on Monday made it clear of where the League's support lies.

However, Randy Hagley, the Guaya United founder and managing director and Derek Edwards, the Petit Valley Diego Martin United manager, both said they found out about the letter after it was written and sent by Super League secretary Peter Thomas.

Both football administrators have since called for the letter highlighting the names of the teams that support the TTFA to be published for all to see, noting that there were lots of Super League clubs that do not support the TTFA stance.

Edwards, who for years has been a critic of the leadership style of Look Loy, the current Chairman of the Technical Committee and the TTSL representative on the Board of Directors of the TTFA, told Guardian Media Sports that the normalization committee is the only way to get T&T football back on track, saying the problem of the high debt has plagued the sport for many years and the normalization committee is the only way to solve the problem.

He also called for the letter of support to be pulled back and let clubs sign a petition to show those who support the TTFA and those that don't. The pair lack of support follows that of the T&T Pro League letter on Thursday which made it clear and advised its Board member Brent Sancho, that the clubs are in support of FIFA's normalisation committee.

Meanwhile, a letter sent by the NFA and signed by president Anthony Harford on Monday said: “It is curious that after three and a half months of substantive tenure, FIFA would take such a decision, when for the two years before our elections, the majority of stakeholders were clamouring for their intervention to no avail. It is even more galling that the elections of November 24, included 100 per cent of the delegates and witnessed by FIFA officials and deemed to be free and fair. We remain steadfast in our belief that this is a breach of justice and we sincerely hope an undogmatic way is found to solve this problem. We look to you prevailing in this matter.”

Another letter of support came from the Secondary Schools Football League (SSFL) which reads: The SSFL wish to communicate their support for the democratically elected officers of the T&T Football Association; who FIFA has stated their intention to unilaterally remove from office. The SSFL condemns the decision, which it views as premature and arbitrary, given the fact that the said officers have been in office merely four months. Secondary Schools Football League supports and encourages the TTFA to explore every available avenue to have the FIFA decision rescinded.”

Letters from the TTAYSO and The T&T Football Referees Association also echoed similar sentiments.
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TTFA lawyers move on FIFA
« Reply #100 on: March 23, 2020, 07:13:44 PM »
TTFA lawyers move on FIFA
By Walter Alibey (T&T Guardian)


Attorneys acting on behalf of the T&T Football Association- Emir Crowne and Matthew Gayle, have agreed to take their case to the next level which will be a pre-action protocol letter that will officially initiate court proceedings through the Court of Arbitration for Sports (CAS) in Switzerland, against the world governing body for football - FIFA.

This became necessary after FIFA, failed to respond to their (TTFA) letter by the scheduled time of 8:00 am on Monday. The letter asked FIFA to rescind its decision to send a Normalisation Committee to run the affairs of T&T football.

On March 17, FIFA decided to enforce article 8 paragraph 2 of the Fifa Statutes (which states that executive bodies of member associations may, under exceptional circumstances, be removed from office by the Fifa Council in consultation with the relevant confederation and replaced by a normalisation committee for a specific period), as it believed that TTFA was on the verge of insolvency.

FIFA decided after a three-man Financial committee visited T&T in February and examined the TTFA books after its accounts were frozen on February 13, following a high court order by one its former employees.

However, the embattled football association, being led by William Wallace has agreed to challenge this, saying that FIFA's action was prejudicial, unjustified and the move was without merit. Wallace and his three vice presidents Clynt Taylor, Susan Joseph-Warrick and Joseph 'Sam" Phillip, who would have made exactly four months into office following their November 24, 2019 election triumph, gave FIFA an 8:00 am deadline on Monday to respond by rescinding their decision. TTFA's former general secretary Ramesh Ramdhan told Guardian Media Sports yesterday that TTFA lawyers received no communication from FIFA.

Ramdhan, a former TT referee who participated at the 1998 World Cup admitted they were not at liberty to make comments for fear of prejudicing the case, but stands by his association's position that his administration, which has done a lot in the little time they were in power, will fight against the injustice of FIFA.

Ramdhan noted that his administration had only received the support of three out of the 31 members of the Caribbean Football Union (CFU), all of whom requested to remain anonymous for fear of victimization by the CONCACAF and the FIFA. After a letter and phone call was sent to all CFU members on March 19, said: “We got responses from three members, all supporting the stance we are taking. But they are so afraid that if they are known, they will be targeted. The other members did not even bother to acknowledge our call, such is the divisiveness that exists among the regional territories.”

According to Ramdhan, this divisiveness among our Caribbean members was championed by former TTFA president David John-Williams, who the CONCACAF and the FIFA have used to achieve their mandate. From the 41 CONCACAF nations, 31 are from the region, an advantage in numbers that is under-utilized, due to a perceive dependency by the CONCACAF (Confederation of North, Central America and the Caribbean Association Football and the- FIFA (Federation of International Football Associations), Ramdhan said.

Meanwhile, Ramdhan also sought to clear the air on the debt of the TTFA, saying it has been confirmed as $50 million. In his letter addressed to the FIFA on January 13, the TTFA put the debt at TT$33.7 million. However, the TTFA general secretary said: “Presently the outstanding balance owed concerning the Home Of Football is approximately $2 million. The amount of confirmed debt TT$15,211, 861.50. Attached for your information and yet to be determined is TT$25 million which represents two matters which are before the courts, the Jack Warner and Sheldon Phillips matters. These figures can change dramatically based on the current trend.”

He explained that attempts were made to pull the Sheldon Phillips matter out of the court with an attempt to settle amicably between the parties, both Phillips and Wallace have been having talks to find a resolution.

<CFU Boss: Challenge to FIFA takeover likely to fail>

Meanwhile, President of the Caribbean Football Union (CFU) Barbadian Randy Harris says while the decision by FIFA to take over the administration of football in Trinidad and Tobago is unfortunate, an appeal against the move is likely to be unsuccessful.

While the Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA) and others in the local football community have described as a coup, the plan by the world governing body for the sport to replace the board with a normalisation committee, Harris said FIFA was acting within the rules that all member associations (MAs) have agreed to play by.

TTFA president William Wallace announced Wednesday that the association has mounted a challenge to FIFA’s decision at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).

On Thursday Harris told Andre Errol Baptiste on I955 FM’s Sports radio show that, "The T&TFA has found itself in a sad situation which all of us in the Caribbean could be in tomorrow.”

However, he said, an appeal would be an expensive option that had little chance of success.

“In this particular situation – in my view, based on my experience – it would be very, very difficult to win a case such as this because FIFA has a right to decide when they will introduce normalisation. If you read the statutes, basically we all agree to play under the statues of FIFA,” Harris contended.

FIFA said on March 17, that it was going the normalisation route because an assessment it carried out in conjunction with the continental governing body, CONCACAF, found extremely low overall financial management methods, combined with a massive debt that resulted in the TTFA facing “a very real risk of insolvency and illiquidity”.

Harris noted that given the TTFA’s financial situation, it would be difficult for it to adequately administer football in the twin-island republic.

“You can’t have it both ways…. The funds that FIFA is allotting to us is not a right, it is a privilege. FIFA can get a president next week that decides that that is not the position that FIFA will take in the future. What will we do in the Caribbean?” he questioned.

FIFA’s normalisation committee will have up to two years to carry out its work, including creating a debt repayment plan which the TTFA can implement, reviewing the local governing body’s statutes and ensuring their adherence to FIFA regulations, and overseeing new elections.
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Offline AZZURRI

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Re: FIFA appoints normalisation committee for Trinidad and Tobago football
« Reply #101 on: March 23, 2020, 07:51:12 PM »
Is there a copy of the PFL and SL letters that support FIFA and the TTFA respectively?


Really hoping that KLL didnt do the same thing that is alleged with Sancho and the PFL concerning their respective leagues supporting FIFA or TTFA

first Ramdhan jump the gun with his release which was either poory reported or just a bad decision by Ramdhan...and now this drama

smh

Offline Flex

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Re: FIFA appoints normalisation committee for Trinidad and Tobago football
« Reply #102 on: March 24, 2020, 08:52:38 AM »
Arima Mayor dispels TTFA $50M debt plan.
T&T Guardian Reports.


Another announcement of a partnership by the T&T Football Association (TTFA) with an expectation to help erase the public-touted TT$50 million debt was dismissed by the office of the Arima Borough Corporation (ABC) via a media release dated March 21.

On Saturday, the Guardian newspaper reported exclusively that the TTFA had signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for a multi-billion dollar state-of-the-art football, residential and sporting facility with a UK Company that would have transformed the Arima community.

The publication followed a the decision on March 17, by the world governing body FIFA to send a Normalisation Committee to govern T&T football. TTFA general secretary Ramesh Ramdhan attempted to show the public the plans that his organisation had put in place and shared with FIFA to deal with the challenges that it faces saying FIFA’s decision was done without merit or logic.

On Friday, Ramdhan, a former World Cup referee revealed that in January there was a series of letters that were exchanged between the TTFA and FIFA, one of which the embattled football administration had signed was an MOU for a multi-billion dollar state-of-the-art football, residential and sporting facility that would have transformed the Arima community.

He said it would have been his administration’s debt-eradication project. It was to be built on the under-utilised Arima Velodrome facility, situated in the heart of the eastern city.

Nevertheless, FIFA still sent a three-member finance audit committee to examine the TTFA accounts between February 26-28, following a High court garnishee order on February 13 by a former employee Kendall Walkes.

According to Ramdhan, the facility was set to include a sporting ground for local, regional and international matches, a living quarters that would have been put out to the public for sale, and a business centre, all of which he said was communicated to the FIFA/CONCACAF three-member team that conducted a financial audit in February as part of their means to clear existing TTFA debt.

“They were told of the purpose of the facility and were even given a copy of the agreement,” Ramdhan noted.

On March 4, at a news conference to announce what the new executive has done 100 days in office, president William Wallace announced that the TTFA had a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to treat with the TT$50 million debt in two to three years time. He did not name the company or partner.

Arima Mayor response to TTFA’s MOU claim

The project was to be done by international architect firm Lavender of the UK, a world-renown company in architecture and the builders of the World Cup stadium in Qatar.

Ramdhan, who was one of two TTFA officials to have signed the MOU, said the project was being done in collaboration with the Arima Borough Corporation and work was scheduled to begin later this year.

However, when contacted the Mayor for Arima Her Worship the Mayor, Councillor Lisa Morris-Julian responded with a media release which reads:

“The Arima Borough Corporation (ABC) would like to address statements by the Mr Ramesh Ramdhan, General Secretary of the Trinidad and Tobago Football Association in the article TTFA reveals $50M debt-eradication proposal published in the Trinidad Guardian on Saturday 21st March 2020. The ABC wishes to state that the Corporation was not a signatory to a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) regarding the proposed sporting facility in Arima.

In January 2020, officials from the TTFA paid a courtesy visit to the office of Her Worship the Mayor, Councillor Lisa Morris-Julian with the stated proposal for the football, residential and sporting facility. TTFA indicated that their international developers intended to visit a site that can accommodate their plans and that the Arima Velodrome seemed suitable.

The officials of TTFA were thanked for the consideration of the project in the Arima Borough, however, further into the discussions, several points were specified to the TTFA officials:

• A project of the magnitude must be approved by the Cabinet before proceeding with any further discussions;

• There must be consultation with Stakeholders and burgesses of the Arima Borough;

• The construction would have significant disruptions for the burgesses and businesses in Arima.

Following this, the officials of the TTFA stated that they were making arrangements for a formal proposal. To this date, nothing was forthcoming to council.”

TTFA letter to Mosengo-Omba to erase the debt

On January 23, a few days after the meeting with the Arima Mayor the TTFA wrote Veron Mosengo-Omba, the Chief Member Association Officer: “The current administration has a plan to deal with the debts inherited and we intend to meet and discuss this with our creditors. It is our intention to acknowledge the debts and if necessary give letters of comfort to avoid the courts of Trinidad and Tobago. We have already signed a Memorandum of Understanding with a foreign company for a project in Trinidad that would factor in a debt of fifty million dollars incorporated in the overall cost of the project to satisfy the debt. Officials of the said company will be visiting Trinidad in a couple of weeks to discuss this public-private partnership with the Government of Trinidad and Tobago.”

Ramdhan revealed in Saturday’s article that: “Official of the company—Lavender, were expected to be in T&T on April 14 to hold talks with Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley and other members of his government, as well as officials of the Arima Borough Corporation. The TTFA was expected to benefit handsomely from this project in terms of finance and it would have been used to clear the existing $50 million debt of the TTFA.”

However, when Guardian Media Sports reached to several Board members about the project on Saturday they said that were not aware of such a plan or project by the TTFA.

Brent Sancho, the acting Chairman of T&T Pro League said he heard of a plan to address the debt but it was not discussed or approved by the Board. Richard Quan Chan, a very experienced board member also said he was not aware of the project. Two other board members who did not want to be named, one said, “I don’t know nothing about that.” and the other said “No comment.”

Before the TTFA letter on January 23, the FIFA, in a letter to the TTFA on January 13, stated: “In light of the significant amount of outstanding debt the T&T Football Association has had in the past with third-party suppliers, the FIFA administration would like to follow up on the current status of those debts. It is important to highlight that assets financed by the FIFA Forward Programme cannot be, under any circumstances, mortgaged. The FIFA Member Associations Division is fully committed and available to support your member association in every necessary aspect in order to achieve a positive outcome.”

TTFA owing Warner, Phillips TT$25M

In response, Ramdhan said, “During a visit by the Development Manager it was discovered that funds intended for other areas were used on the now controversial Home of Football which resulted in the football association’s failure to meet its day-to-day expenses, particularly salaries for staff during the Christmas. Presently the outstanding balance owed in relation to the Home of Football is approximately $2 million, while the amount confirmed in debt is $38,782, 826.31. It was explained that others payable are $15,211,861.50, while to be determined was a $25 million which represents two (2) matters which are before the courts re: Jack Warner and Sheldon Phillips. These figures can change dramatically based on the current trend.”

In November 2019, at the launch of his TTFA presidency, William Wallace announced a list of prospective sponsors that were to inject an estimated TT$30 million into the TTFA once he became successful. Among them were American sporting goods giant Nike and local the contractor the Junior Sammy Group of Companies. Both deals have fallen through.

On March 3, the TTFA also announced a partnership worth TT$1.5 million with Caribbean Chemicals Limited, however, two days after FIFA announced that it has decided to send in a normalisation committee to run T&T football the company cancelled the arrangement.

On Tuesday, FIFA decided to send a normalisation committee after it felt the football association’s financial position was near insolvency, although the TTFA tried to convinced FIFA that they were set to wipe clean the debt through the Lavender project. They (TTFA) also sought to show FIFA that it would have put the country’s football on a stable footing.

A day after FIFA’s decision, the TTFA president Wallace announced that the association will challenge FIFA’s decision at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS). FIFA was given until today to respond to the TTFA.

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Re: FIFA appoints normalisation committee for Trinidad and Tobago football
« Reply #103 on: March 24, 2020, 08:55:07 AM »
FIFA yet to respond to TTFA’s legal threat.
By Joel Bailey (Newsday).


FIFA, the world’s governing body for football, is yet to respond to the legal threat issued by former TT Football Association (TTFA) president William Wallace, who is challenging FIFA’s decision last Tuesday to scrap the TTFA executive and implement a normalisation committee.

Wallace, represented by attorneys Dr Emir Crowne and Matthew Gayle, threatened FIFA general secretary Fatma Samoura with formal legal proceedings.

The attorneys described the committee as “attempted unlawful interference in the operation of the sovereign body”. FIFA was given until 8 am on Monday to respond.

But Ramesh Ramdhan, TTFA general secretary, said, “We are awaiting (the TTFA lawyers’) next move. As far as I know, they have not communicated as they were advised to communicate, by 8 am Trinidad time. The attorneys are now contemplating putting through their next move if they didn’t comply.

“We have to wait until the attorneys get back to us.”

Ramdhan is hopeful that the TTFA gets feedback from FIFA by Tuesday morning.

Dr Crowne and Gayle also issued a pre-action protocol letter to TTFA finance manager Tyril Patrick, who was named by FIFA to head the local governing body, until the normalisation committee was implemented.

However, Patrick, on Saturday, decided against taking up the offer, leaving the TTFA without a head.

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Re: FIFA appoints normalisation committee for Trinidad and Tobago football
« Reply #104 on: March 24, 2020, 08:55:55 AM »
Wallace gets support: ‘premature’ decision.
By Joel Bailey (Newsday).


FIVE local football bodies have all thrown their support behind the TT Football Association (TTFA), in its battle against FIFA’s decision to send a normalisation committee to conduct the affairs of local football.

Last Tuesday, FIFA decided to scrap the TTFA executive, led by president William Wallace, and implement the committee due to mounting debt by the TTFA, which was more than $50 million.

On Wednesday, FIFA appointed TTFA finance manager Tyril Patrick to head the TTFA until the committee was implemented. However, on Saturday, Patrick declined FIFA’s offer, stating that he did not want to attempt interfering in the running of the duly elected TTFA executive.

The local bodies who have all offered support are the TT Super League, the Northern Football Association (NFA), the Tobago Football Association (TFA), the Secondary Schools Football League (SSFL) and the TT American Youth Soccer Organisation (TTAYSO).

In a letter to TTFA general secretary Ramesh Ramdhan on Monday, which was issued by TT Super League secretary Peter Thomas, “the clubs of the Super League wish to communicate their support for the democratically elected officers of the TTFA, who FIFA have stated their intention to unilaterally remove from office.”

The Super League has condemned the decision by FIFA, “which it views as premature and arbitrary, given the fact that (the TTFA executive) have been in office merely four months.”

And the Super League has encouraged the TTFA “to explore every available avenue to have the FIFA decision rescinded.”

NFA president Anthony Harford, who addressed his letter to Wallace, said, “It is curious that, after just three and a half months of substantive tenure, FIFA would take such a decision, when for the two years prior to our elections, the majority of stakeholders were clamouring for their intervention, to no avail.”

Harford added, “We remain steadfast in our belief that this is a breach of justice and we sincerely hope an undogmatic way is found to solve this problem. We look forward to your prevailing in this matter.”

Via a letter issued by its vice-president Samuel Orr to the TTFA on Saturday, the TFA, “(raises) its disappointment at the action initiated by FIFA.”

The TFA has also urged the TTFA to seek any available means to get the FIFA decision rescinded.

Also, on Monday, the SSFL general secretary Azaad Khan and TTAYSO area director Dale Toney both sent letters to the TTFA, condemning the move made by FIFA.

On Thursday, the TT Pro League expressed their support towards the setting up of the normalisation committee.

“As a football company who have invested over $200 million into the national economy over the last 18 years, the TT Pro League stand ready to work alongside the Ministry of Sports and the FIFA appointed normalisation committee for the continued development of the game.

“The TT Pro League will not support any move by the former administration to engage in any legal battle against FIFA over their removal from office,” said the Pro League, in a media release.

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Re: FIFA appoints normalisation committee for Trinidad and Tobago football
« Reply #105 on: March 25, 2020, 06:01:52 AM »
TTFA must be normalized, if not now, when?
By Andre E Baptiste (Guardian).


Normal has become abnormal in these times for the world. There are many in this world currently that believe that abnormal is the new normal and in this context, I am not talking about person’s behaviour, integrity or beliefs but rather the abstract opposite that defines a country and in some cases a sport, a constitution and the organization charged with the responsibility to manage such.

The announcement on March 17 by FIFA that it is sending a Normalization committee to this country has sent shockwaves to all if not most but the question is - Should we be surprised?.

There may be at least six other sports in this country that require some intervention.

The facts are that Football is the most popular sport in this country while remaining not the most successful given only one Senior Men’s World Cup qualification in 2005 for the 2006 World Cup. However, if you do not measure success on World qualification events both for men and women then football is a success because it is the sport in this country for which nearly all citizens would have participated in at one time or the other at any age-group level. This, therefore, dictates that it is critical in every which way to this country.

Therefore, history will dictate that after 2006, the senior men’s team lost its way through the corridors and offices of the Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA) and has not recovered since. In 2014 our senior women footballers inspired by a team spirit and drive from all involved from administration to coach to the captain to players to supporters and even among our latent doubters (that “L” word again) overcame one obstacle after another to just fall short at the Hasely Crawford Stadium on tears filled night on December 2.

After that loss and disappointment, Many felt the hammer of Fifa was coming thereafter but wisely a change in the constitution to allow the one club vote system based on the recommendation by an elite group of T&T citizens (willing to volunteer time and energy for no financial reward) may have bought the Raymond Tim Kee administration some time, it was finally ratified in July 2015 but then later in 2015, Tim Kee’s new policy unlocked the door to democratic elections, as it should always be in any organization.

And In came David John-Williams whose style after the election rubbed some the wrong way. Perhaps he did not trust those around him, Perhaps they did not trust him but sadly for all, under the new dispensation of the TTFA everyone had a voice, each person could speak and even if not heard by dissenting voices, the advent of social media and political one-upmanship meant their views would be made public somewhere else, over time it would become toxic. John-Williams believed in his idea because he was a football man, rich in the history of the Pro League with W Connection and willing to invest his money where his mouth is. And Fifa all this time lurking in the background would have again taken note and sharpen their pencils after all this was T&T the country of Austin” Jack “ Warner, a man they now despised because of what they believed he had done to them (interestingly not for them).

As well a change in the leadership of FIFA, with Giovanni Infantino seeking out and getting John- Williams support in his FIFA presidency would have made the FIFA internal thrust to move in on T&T, possibly get a stay of execution. Infantino was elected President of FIFA in February 2016.

Thus until November 2019 when the Home of football was opened, all Normalization thoughts and talks were averted or discontinued. So like Tim Kee, John-Williams had avoided the hammer by not only mere strategy but also I suggest by listening to advice from others.

William Wallace wins in 2019 in a competitive but fair election on the backdrop of not only change but also ideas and promises as well.

The country is ready and waiting, but not for what comes next, after several logical proposals for new staffing and roles, comes the thought that there is no money to fund such. Where are the FIFA money, the FIFA support, and the FIFA grant?

FIFA’s handle though was over, they were no longer directly involved, not visiting, not checking the facility, not checking the payments, not readily in discussion with the TTFA and that was now going to be a concern. But the question has to be - Why should it? This was a facility that was to be an income generator eventually through the hotel and a planned income generator entertainment centre as well, like football fields to rent or lease out. But that never materialize because of questions raised by the newly appointed team on the facility and eventually the publicly endorsed closure of the reported $2 million US facility.

FIFA’s rationale for implementing the Normalization committee has been questioned in light of the words expressed on my programme by President Wallace and the General Secretary Ramdhan and the apparent assurances given to both by Fifa officials just over three weeks ago. Just as I told both men, they needed to get those thoughts and opinions in writing because at this stage they mean little.

Ramdhan shoots from the hip and talks from the heart, they are a good pair at times, because they are both passionate but again in this football environment that is Trinidad and Tobago where egos exist, there are always people trying to shut you down for your beliefs because it was not theirs.

The days of just rolling in and expecting no questions are gone. Communication works both ways and not just one alone. There is a sense that Wallace and Ramdhan may want what is best for our football and so too did John-Williams and Tim Kee but the difference may just be how each proceeded in this regard and also who was in charge of Fifa at the time. Tim Kee was the President during the rough days of Fifa investigation and changing of the guards while John-Williams supported the incumbent.

Sadly both Wallace and Ramdhan missed the opportunity to stake their intentions and claims personally with both the President of FIFA and CONCACAF in November

Lastly, FIFA in this environment will find it difficult to select persons who will be able to withstand what may come next one way or the other unless they can get the – buy-in – of the public by themselves being open and transparent with all the information in their possession. It is the only way forward and let our hopes they realize that before Trinidad and Tobago pay the ultimate price. It may also be extremely difficult to convince professionals of FIFA way unless they can explicitly detail their findings and objectives and not hide behind innuendos. It may be asking a lot of them, but we the people of this country – deserve no less than that.

The real measure of a man's character is what he would do if he knew he would never be found out.

Offline FF

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Re: FIFA appoints normalisation committee for Trinidad and Tobago football
« Reply #106 on: March 25, 2020, 07:53:38 AM »
Andre Baptiste take that drivel and shove it.
Ain't nobody swallowing that tripe
THE BEATINGS WILL CONTINUE UNTIL MORALE IMPROVES

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Re: FIFA appoints normalisation committee for Trinidad and Tobago football
« Reply #107 on: March 25, 2020, 08:29:34 AM »
The unmasking of Andre Baptiste,  is it?
"It is not possible to make successful policy in a state of ignorance or indifference to what goes on in the real world." --- Martin Daly.

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Re: FIFA appoints normalisation committee for Trinidad and Tobago football
« Reply #108 on: March 25, 2020, 08:33:50 AM »
The unmasking of Andre Baptiste,  is it?
what mask when was there ever a mask, he was "inside" and fighting to stay dey all through d election, i95 too may be culpable
I pity the fool....

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Re: FIFA appoints normalisation committee for Trinidad and Tobago football
« Reply #109 on: March 25, 2020, 02:24:18 PM »
I hate that guy, I really do. Heard him on the jokey sport program of his with his dumb lisp talking about azim basserat and David cameron. this bloke is certainly not without prejudice and he makes no efforts to hide his obvious biases. people like him has no place in the public domain, especially in a place like Trinidad where most depend on the media for their information.

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TTFA risks suspension in pursuit of justice against FIFA
« Reply #110 on: March 25, 2020, 06:47:27 PM »
TTFA risks suspension in pursuit of justice against FIFA
By Gyasi Merrique (T&T Guardian)


The dust raised by sudden and swift football takeover here in T&T has not yet settled and neither will it settle soon, Especially if the ousted administration continues to pursue mediation through the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) on FIFA’s decision to appoint a Normalisation Committee here in T&T.

It was only last Tuesday March 17, FIFA announced that it had disbanded the ruling TTFA administration led by William Wallace, in favour of its committee to run the day to day affairs, establish a plan to reduce the association’s mounting debt, make necessary adjustments to the TTFA statutes so that they are compliant with FIFA’s and finally, to organize and execute an election at the end of its stipulated time in charge or at the end of the process, whichever comes first.

Since that communication to the TTFA, FIFA has neither identified a chairman for this committee and its members nor has football’s global governing body stipulated how long will this committee serve, except to say that its stay will not exceed 24 months.

During a recent interview with Guardian Media Sports, Clinton Urling - former chairman of the FIFA Normalisation Committee in Guyana in 2014, said that the aggrieved T&T football administrators are well within their right to take the matter to CAS without fear of reprimand from FIFA.

However, Urling foreshadowed that premise by stating categorically that the position which the local association now finds itself is, “…the point before the same FIFA says ‘you are no longer a part of the FIFA family’ or bans the entire member association.”

End of the road for TTFA

Former FIFA VP Jack Warner backed this up when he stated that the installation of a normalization committee was “the end of the rope” for the TTFA and “the lowest point” for any FIFA member association.

By these pronunciations it seems that the TTFA and T&T’s status among the international football community is hanging by a thread. In fact, one needs only to review a situation which emerged in 2008 leading to the suspension of the Samoa Football Soccer Federation within a matter of eight months of a similar intervention by FIFA to that which the TTFA now faces.

And if there is anyone that can warn the TTFA about the possibility of a suspension from the FIFA family, that person is Warner himself who was a member of the FIFA Emergency Committee which decided on Samoa.

According to a FIFA report which Guardian Media Sports has seen - In 2008, following a joint mission between FIFA and the Oceania Football Confederation into Samoa four months earlier, FIFA attempted to set up a Normalization Committee at the SFSF with the stated objective to “restore the proper administration of football in Samoa.”

Samoa's debt was only US $686,000

At the time, the Samoa Football Soccer Federation (SFSF) was burdened with significant debt, believed to be an estimated $US686,000 and still with the possibility of bulging further if more creditors stepped forward with claims. FIFA determined that this, as well as general mismanagement of the association “endangered not only the association but also FIFA’s Goal Project in Samoa.”

The FIFA Goal Programme provides resources and funding for essential projects so that member associations in developing countries can advance the game of football. – FIFA.com

In what could be interpreted as FIFA acting (in the main) in the interest of protecting its significant investment in the Samoa Goal Project as well as to save the federation from crippling debt, Warner and the rest of FIFA’s Emergency Committee - chaired by former FIFA President, Sepp Blatter and included other former FIFA Executive Committee members, Michel Platini, Issa Hayatou, Mohamed Bin Hammam, Reynald Temarii and Dr Nicolas Leoz – took action.

The similarities between the Samoan Federation and T&T’s are striking, starting with those between the FIFA Goal Programme, instituted by Blatter in 1999 and the FIFA Forward Development Programme adopted in 2016, under which the construction and establishment of the TTFA’s Home of Football has been funded.

FIFA protecting its investment

FIFA Forward is built to provide 360-degree, tailor-made support for football development in each of our member associations and the six confederations and is based on three principles - more investment, more impact, more oversight. The aim is to improve the way we develop and support football across the globe so that football can reach its potential in every single country. – FIFA.com

Despite being declared open under former TTFA president David John-Williams last November, William Wallace and the new TTFA board of Directors elected on November 24, decided to keep the HoF closed. They claim that an audit of the project has uncovered that in addition to the incompletion of necessary works that would bring the facility up to code, there also several outstanding debts to suppliers and contractors who worked on the project.

In Samoa in 2008, creditors threatened to foreclose on the Goal Project as well as to seize certain assets before the FIFA Finance Committee agreed to an exemption to its Financial Assistance Programme rules to allow the SFSF to use FAP funds to pay off outstanding debts.

Moving beyond the financial resemblances, there are also similarities in legal posturing between the SFSF and the TTFA.

However, unlike FIFA’s willingness to bend its FAP rules where finances are a concern, attempting to take them on in the very public glare of the legal arena proved to not such a good idea in the case of Samoa.

Why Samoa was suspended

After FIFA attempted to institute is own remedial measures, then SFSF president Tautulu Roebuck refused to recognize the power of FIFA’s normalization committee and twice tried to take the dispute to a tribunal.

An initial submission in June 2008 to CAS was ordered to be withdrawn due to administrative oversight, but by October, according to an article appearing on the website of Fijian newspaper – Fiji Sun, the FIFA Emergency Committee decided to suspend the SFSF with immediate effect over its non-compliance with the normalization committee.

In November of 2008, Radio New Zealand (RNZ) reported that Samoa’s Sports Tribunal ruled in favour of the normalization committee taking over the affairs of the SFSF. The Tribunal granted the Normalisation Committee full jurisdiction and ordered Roebuck to resign his post and relinquish all Federation files to the Normalisation Committee.

Following Roebuck’s official appeal of these decisions as well as FIFA’s suspension of the SFSF, the Court of Arbitration of sport determined in May 2009, the SFSF president’s “Lack of standing to appeal” relating to the “Validity of a FIFA decision to establish a normalization Committee”.

The Court’s adjudicating panel determined the following:

As for the function of the NC, the federation’s chairman is therefore automatically replaced by the NC and the replaced chairman, as an individual not subject to the FIFA Statutes, therefore cannot appear before CAS in his individual capacity as he lacks standing. The appeal should thus be rejected on these grounds without going into the merits of the case.”

Like Samoa and other member nations before it, the TTFA is well within its right to pursue justice against any perceived wrong-going even if history shows that the outcome might not always be favourable.

Editor's note:

According to TTFA and FIFA documents seen by Guardian Media Sports - During 2012 and 2014 two different groups within the TTFA sought to get FIFA's involvement to remedy concerns that plagued T&T football. The first was a group of players who were aiming to qualify for the 2014 World Cup and sighted several issues among mismanagement and financial concerns that would affect the country's chances of achieving its objective. In the second instance, two vice presidents serving under former President (now deceased) Raymond Tim Kee (Rudolph Thomas and Lennox Watson) requested FIFA's involvement.

The result was that FIFA through its then secretary Jerome Valcke gave the TTFA an ultimatum; to establish an Independent Reform Commission, or; face being reported to the FIFA Emergency Committee for consideration and action, which could have included the appointment of a Normalization Committee.

The reforms committee was set-up and that led to a new constitution which changed the name from the T&T Football Federation (TTFF) to the T&T Football Association (TTFA) and elections which saw David John-Williams elected as the new TTFA President in November 2015.
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Much of TTFA, FIFA fallout still shrouded in confusion and contradiction
« Reply #111 on: March 25, 2020, 06:58:44 PM »
Opinion: Much of TTFA, FIFA fallout still shrouded in confusion and contradiction
Kwesi Mugisa (digicelsportsmax.com)


Even from a distance, it seems impossible not to gawk at the mangled train wreck that has unfolded at the Trinidad and Tobago Football Association and not be overcome with a sense of bewilderment.

In a press conference earlier this month, then newly elected president William Wallace became the latest in a long line of TTFA bosses to firmly plant allegations of widespread corruption at the feet of the previous tenants.  The new head honcho pointed to unpaid statutory deductions, bounced checks, a faulty finance structure as partial contributors to the body accruing a towering $US7,370,990 (TT$50,000,000).  Wallace also pointed to an incomplete Home of Football in Couva, which he claimed was shown to have structural flaws and lacking proper insurance.

In the midst of the doom and gloom, Wallace then went on to paint a much rosier outlook for the future of the TTFA, after claiming the newly appointed administration had already taken major steps to alleviate some of the issues.  A settlement had been reached with television commentator Selwyn Melville regarding the issue of who owns the ‘Soca Warriors’ (Now famous nickname of the Trinidad and Tobago Men's Senior team)  and the announcement of an unspecified memorandum of understanding that would clear the debt in ‘two to three years’. The president pointed out that the new body had secured a TT$25-million apparel deal, secured a broadcast and digital rights partner, sealed a domestic sponsor and secured a sponsor for the FA.

Good so far, but crucially, Wallace claimed that the work of a pair of accountants posted within his administration’s new internal finance structure satisfied a recent delegation of FIFA and Concacaf officials and that a better relationship could be expected going forward.  The bodies have long been at odds regarding the financial state of the local football body and had delayed its annual subvention.  A little over two weeks later FIFA disbanded the Board of the TTFA and appointed a normalization committee to take over affairs.  What on earth is going on? Nobody has explained to date.

The timing of FIFA's intervention seems strange, deciding to disband a newly formed executive that seems to not only have implemented structural reform but also pledges for financial support. A perceived sense of chumminess with the former administration, whether real or imagined put this in an even worse light and could be a real black eye for a Gianni Infantino-led organisation, which claims to have taken on the mantle of crusaders against corruption.

The response of the former TTFA members is, however, also interesting.

Any claims about a violation of sovereign and democratically elected officials certainly does not fly as when it comes to football the twin-island republic falls directly under the governance of FIFA itself and not the state. In several instances, countries have been suspended from the organisation for violating just that principle. The charter and ordinances that govern all 211 national associations of which T&T are a part, and the particular article that was quoted, gives them the specific right to intervene in the affairs of a member nation.  Normalisation committees are not after all aberrations on the global football landscape with Ghana, Egypt, Pakistan and Namibia among a few of those that have received such ‘assistance’ in recent years. This isn't even the first time this has happened in the Caribbean, with FIFA taking over the Guyana Football Federation and putting in a normalisation committee for a little over a year.

In other words, Caribbean Football Union (CFU) president Randy Harris was right, even if not popular, in pointing out that the appointment of normalisation committees is the prerogative of FIFA and can happen to any of the 211 national associations.  With all members agreeing to and playing under those statues it is difficult to see how it can be argued otherwise.

Secondly, it’s hard to imagine supporting the argument that a measure put in place to mitigate against damage the TTFA has admitted exists, is unfair, and to do so with the question, 'why now?'. FIFA should perhaps have intervened long ago, but few could argue with firefighters attempting to save any part of a house that has been engulfed in flames for a prolonged period. We would not advocate them letting it burn to the ground.

Though they may not be required to, FIFA should, in the interest of the transparency they have long sought, give more details on the specifics of these particular circumstances.
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Offline theworm2345

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Re: FIFA appoints normalisation committee for Trinidad and Tobago football
« Reply #112 on: March 25, 2020, 07:48:17 PM »
I wrote a sort of article/opinion piece a week ago and submitted it to a journalist with a well-known media outlet in T&T.  I did so under my real name as related to my Caribbean football site with a preface explaining my relation to the game in the region -- it appears it was not published, so I thought I'd share it here

Time for the CFU to Grow Some Teeth and Support Ousted TTFA

The date was 13 November 2016, 8:46 PM in Chicago, 10:46 PM in Trinidad and Tobago and Haiti had just beaten St. Kitts and Nevis 2-0 in CFU Caribbean Cup qualification.  The match had finished 0-0 in at the end of normal time, but due to tournament rules stating that there would be no matches could end in a draw, Haiti scored twice in extra time, aided by a red card to their opponents for a moment of absolute madness.  This result left Haiti second in Group 2 of Round 3 of the qualifying competition, with the three best runners up from the four, three-team groups in this round qualifying for a “5th Place Playoff.”  The result left Haiti level with Antigua and Barbuda in their respective groups, each in second place with three points, a goal difference of minus one, Haiti appearing to be occupying the final playoff spot with four goals scored to Antigua’s two. 

Very quickly, however, a question arose about which side should go through – Haiti claiming they should go through by virtue of goals scored, Antigua and Barbuda saying that Haiti’s three points, coming after what normally would have been a 0-0 draw, should have seen the Benna Boys go through.  Messages from people within each country’s Football Association showed that neither was clear about the competition rules or which country should go through.  Messages to organizers at the Caribbean Football Union quickly revealed that no one within the organization was certain of which side should go through.  After days of well-publicized confusion, CFU referred the matter to CONCACAF, who ultimately decided that Haiti would go through.  The most damning aspect of the whole affair was that the CFU had clearly not learned their lesson from the globally-infamous, farcical match between Grenada and Barbados at the same tournament in 1994 -- video of which has been viewed over two million times on YouTube – the CFU being fortunate that the exact situation did not reoccur in 2016 had a team needed to extend play beyond 90 minutes for any reason. 

CONCACAF’s reaction to the absurdity was swift -- though there is evidence their subsequent actions were already planned.  In March 2017, they opened an office in Jamaica and quickly took control of all of the region’s competitions.  Gone were the CFU Caribbean Cup and CFU Club Championship, to be replaced by the CONCACAF-backed Nations League, Caribbean Club Championship, and Caribbean Shield.  After this power move, the Caribbean Football Union, for all intents and purposes, faded to oblivion.

The merits of CONCACAF’s complete takeover of football in the region are debatable.  Without question, the CFU following the 2011 corruption scandal, was at a low ebb.  After a landmark partnership with Digicel for the 2006-2010 Caribbean Championships/Caribbean Cups which saw massive local promotion of the tournament, as well as highlights packages and live matches broadcast around the world, subsequent tournaments were poorly covered both locally and internationally and, as demonstrated, poorly organized.  With the region’s hegemon, Jack Warner, removed from power, along with his acolytes throughout FAs in the region, a relative power vacuum saw the region begin to drift listlessly. Without doubt, many would point out that CONCACAF’s Nations League has been a positive move for football in the Caribbean, with 100% participation from all member FAs a big improvement on past tournaments, when many national teams often went years without playing so much as an international friendly. 

While the Nations League has been an improvement, at least on the pitch, fundamental problems persist throughout the Caribbean.  On a personal level, I have been very vocal in my criticisms of top-level football governance, with a few notable exceptions who I would not want to tar with this broad brush, of FAs across the Caribbean.  (I must categorically state that this is not a criticism of the people working, often in volunteer roles, in the everyday operations of FAs and football in the region).  To lay bare here the laundry list of fundamental ways that the game across the region must be handled more professionally in order to progress would be unproductive and would likely require another lengthy article.  Progress on basic aspects of the game is well within reach for many FAs – indeed, it has already been seen in some corners -- and in many cases would not be very difficult to attain, but to do so would require upsetting the status quo, which many are not willing to do.  It is my belief that, if the region, or even an individual FA, is to make any positive strides forward, it must do so under its own impetus. 
As such, until Tuesday, my biggest criticisms of the past two Concacaf regimes in relation to Caribbean football, would have been their general apathy toward promoting the game in region.  This was perhaps best-evidenced at the Caribbean Shield competition, a second-tier international club tournament featuring the non-professional domestic clubs in the region.  For the last two editions of the Shield, Concacaf has featured little-to-zero coverage on their website in terms of match reports or match data, and what little there has been has been rife with errors, such as incorrect results or players being given as playing for the wrong team.  Media coverage such as live streaming of matches or even live updates from matches has been non-existent from Concacaf, despite the fact that at least one broadcaster confirmed that they had offered to stream these matches.  For these players, the amateur and semi-professionals who are in the most dire need of exposure, the Shield has been a major failure on Concacaf’s part.  Even on the most-laudable aspects of Concacaf’s changes, there was cause for eye-rolling, such as when the ignorant commentators on the Nations League broadcasts would, amongst other basic errors, mispronounce the names of the teams playing (e.g. “an-geel-lah”, “ant-teeg-gwah and bar-boo-dah”, “gwah-duh-loo-pay”, “duh-min-ick-cah”, etc.).  These sorts of issues -- which now pervade Concacaf’s coverage of the game in the region, yet had been rendered largely non-existent in Caribbean football until the aforementioned 2011 corruption scandal occurred -- could perhaps have been written off as pedantic or punctilious given other far larger positive strides, such as the aforementioned Nations League.

This all changed on Tuesday with FIFA’s announcement that, in conjunction with Concacaf, the new, William Wallace-led TTFA executive had been ousted in favor of a FIFA-selected normalisation committee.  In general, I am not against FIFA’s intervention in the region.  In fact, I welcomed their decision to intervene against the deeply corrupt, Osiris Guzman-run FA in the Dominican Republic in 2018 with open arms.  However, the blatant imperialistic overtones and clearly unethical aspects of this decision against the TTFA were laid bare in the media almost immediately and do not bear repeating here.  The most galling aspect of this decision was that the William Wallace-led TTFA, after only three months, had been a bright spot in Caribbean football, namely with their push for the transparency and accountability that have been so badly lacking in both Trinidad and Tobago as well as most other FAs across the region.  Another clear difference between this case and the aforementioned Dominican Republic case, was the massive difference in local public opinion about the respective FAs.  As someone who had already become disillusioned with the poor governance of the game in the region, for this decision to be taken against a new FA that was taking positive, almost unheard of, steps towards progress was unconscionable.

It is with the above in mind that I would call on the 30 remaining member FAs of the Caribbean Football Union to unite behind the ousted TTFA administration as they take their case against FIFA to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.  Without question, I would understand that there might be hesitancy from individual FAs to “upset the apple cart” in view of their own interests in relation to Concacaf and FIFA.  To be one of the possibly-few to stick their head above the parapet would be a risk that I have no doubt many, all being well, would rather not make.  With that in mind, a strong, reunited CFU would leave the organization with 31 Concacaf members – a large majority in the region – and 25 FIFA members, which would be a force to be reckoned with as far as the global governing body is concerned.  If the CFU were successful with such an action, it could then begin to chart their own course forward without fear of bullying from their “big brothers” at Concacaf and FIFA – and would also help protect themselves from similar action in the future.  For the sake of football in Trinidad and Tobago, as well as the Caribbean as a whole, I hope the CFU will do so.


« Last Edit: March 25, 2020, 07:50:24 PM by theworm2345 »

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Opinion: FIFA article 8.2 promotes bullying
« Reply #113 on: March 25, 2020, 09:03:58 PM »
Opinion: FIFA article 8.2 promotes bullying
By Paul-Andre Walker (digicelsportsmax.com)


The Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) is the most powerful sporting body in the world and it should be.

FIFA is in control of 211 football associations throughout the world, in a sport that is the most popular and profitable on the globe.

However, the association hasn’t always used that power in the most judicious ways and recently went through a harrowing couple of years with evidence of widespread corruption beating down on its reputation.

Many bans and jail sentences later, FIFA has tried to change its image with new, progressive bosses with a more inclusive management style.

But, in truth, FIFA is a fiefdom and that was made very clear in the events in Trinidad and Tobago over the last week.

The Trinidad and Tobago Football Association’s (TTFA) board does not exist anymore and its president, scratch that, former president, looks set for a lengthy legal battle to change that.

I do not want to get into the who is right and who is wrong, even though there are questions FIFA should answer.

Here are the facts as we know them.

An arm of FIFA called the Bureau of the FIFA Council investigated the financial affairs of the TTFA, which had just gone through the process of electing a new president in William Wallace just over three months before.

According to the council’s findings, the TTFA was in bad shape financially, so bad, that it risked the possibility of insolvency if the situation were not arrested.

Further, the council says it found that there was no plan to assuage the situation, leading it to replace the TTFA’s board with a normalization committee that would be in place for a maximum of two years after which it would hold elections to create a new board with its own mandate.

On an interim basis, FIFA installed former TTFA Finance Manager Tyril Patrick to oversee the day-to-day activities of the organization before the normalization committee could be properly vetted, organized and begin to work.

According to FIFA, that normalization committee would be given a mandate to:
1. Run the TTFA’s daily affairs;
2. Establish a debt repayment plan that is implementable by the TTFA;
3. Review and amend the TTFA Statutes (and other regulations where necessary) and to ensure their compliance with the FIFA Statutes and requirements before duly submitting them for approval to the TTFA Congress;
4. Organise and conduct elections of a new TTFA executive committee for a four-year mandate.
 
But today, the TTFA has no direction as interim boss, Patrick, declined the position after lawyers for Wallace wrote to him, calling his appointment illegal, or at the very least unconstitutional.

In fact, the former TTFA boss has not taken his ousting lying down and is contemplating taking his grouses to the Court of Arbitration for Sport, pointing out that FIFA has ignored his plans to get the TTFA out of debt and is claiming prejudice against his administration, pointing first up to the timing of the ‘coup d’etat’ and the implications of a friendship with the TTFA’s previous boss, as well as inconsistencies regarding a FIFA-TTFA joint project dubbed ‘The Home of Football’.   

I won’t look at any of that, however. I am more interested in the entrenched laws that allow FIFA to make a decision of this nature.

Caribbean Football Union (CFU) president, Randy Harris sympathises with the ousted TTFA administration but believes FIFA well within their rights to install a normalization committee.

Harris is right because of article 8.2 of the FIFA statute.

Article 8.2 states: ‘Executive bodies of member associations may under exceptional circumstances be removed from office by the Council in consultation with the relevant confederation and replaced by a normalisation committee for a specific period of time’.

It is here that I have a problem though.

I suppose, FIFA, as arbiters of the sport, must have in its bylaws, appropriate actions to ensure the continued growth of the sport throughout the world, but I find this article distasteful.

The article admits that the council is removing an ‘Executive’ body which has been duly elected by administrators of the sport within a country. This means, FIFA is saying it reserves the right to ignore the democracy of an entity when it has a mind to do so.

I say ‘has a mind’, because it is the council who decides what is an ‘exceptional circumstance’ and in this instance, it very well might be. But the fact that it is FIFA making this judgement, is problematic.

Each Member Association has elections and it is there that they decide if the fate of their organization can be managed by its leaders. It should certainly not be as easy as it was for FIFA to overturn that decision.

It means, in essence, if a Member Association does not operate its own affairs just the way FIFA says it should, and each country has a different set of circumstances to deal with that could mean varying ways of operating such affairs, then you could find that you have no say.

Harris pointed to this fact in a radio interview with Trinidad and Tobago’s i955 FM’s ISports radio, saying “The Trinidad and Tobago FA has found itself in a sad situation which all of us in the Caribbean could be in tomorrow.”

Therein lies my problem. This particular ‘takeover’ may very well be warranted with the TTFA in debt to the tune of TT$50 million, the question is, who decides this, and how can it be that ‘little’ Member Associations have no say in deciding whether or not they need outside help?
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Re: FIFA appoints normalisation committee for Trinidad and Tobago football
« Reply #114 on: March 25, 2020, 09:55:18 PM »
what if the government was to absolve this debt, would it be accepted by fifa or could it be perceived as government tampering? and if not, would fifa accept such an intervention and remove their measures on the TTFA?

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Re: FIFA appoints normalisation committee for Trinidad and Tobago football
« Reply #115 on: March 26, 2020, 12:07:43 AM »
what if the government was to absolve this debt, would it be accepted by fifa or could it be perceived as government tampering? and if not, would fifa accept such an intervention and remove their measures on the TTFA?

I suggested this a while back but people said why should the govt bail them out... I’m like because it impacts the nation in a positive manner...

Now you will get pnm saying, oil is plummeting so we don’t have the money to help football but even when oil was high it’s the same excuse.. at least Wallace and Ramdhan was much more transparent than previous admins and could have been trusted to bail out football for the betterment of our society

It wouldn’t be considered tampering if they inject it into football directly and monitor payments with no direct control over it.. but then you have to ask yourself, Rowley was there when infantino visited and was neck and neck... I wouldn’t put it past them that the govt is also complicit as well and have sold out
« Last Edit: March 26, 2020, 12:10:36 AM by Controversial »

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Re: FIFA appoints normalisation committee for Trinidad and Tobago football
« Reply #116 on: March 26, 2020, 12:19:23 AM »
TTFA must be normalized, if not now, when?
By Andre E Baptiste (Guardian).


Normal has become abnormal in these times for the world. There are many in this world currently that believe that abnormal is the new normal and in this context, I am not talking about person’s behaviour, integrity or beliefs but rather the abstract opposite that defines a country and in some cases a sport, a constitution and the organization charged with the responsibility to manage such.

The announcement on March 17 by FIFA that it is sending a Normalization committee to this country has sent shockwaves to all if not most but the question is - Should we be surprised?.

There may be at least six other sports in this country that require some intervention.

The facts are that Football is the most popular sport in this country while remaining not the most successful given only one Senior Men’s World Cup qualification in 2005 for the 2006 World Cup. However, if you do not measure success on World qualification events both for men and women then football is a success because it is the sport in this country for which nearly all citizens would have participated in at one time or the other at any age-group level. This, therefore, dictates that it is critical in every which way to this country.

Therefore, history will dictate that after 2006, the senior men’s team lost its way through the corridors and offices of the Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA) and has not recovered since. In 2014 our senior women footballers inspired by a team spirit and drive from all involved from administration to coach to the captain to players to supporters and even among our latent doubters (that “L” word again) overcame one obstacle after another to just fall short at the Hasely Crawford Stadium on tears filled night on December 2.

After that loss and disappointment, Many felt the hammer of Fifa was coming thereafter but wisely a change in the constitution to allow the one club vote system based on the recommendation by an elite group of T&T citizens (willing to volunteer time and energy for no financial reward) may have bought the Raymond Tim Kee administration some time, it was finally ratified in July 2015 but then later in 2015, Tim Kee’s new policy unlocked the door to democratic elections, as it should always be in any organization.

And In came David John-Williams whose style after the election rubbed some the wrong way. Perhaps he did not trust those around him, Perhaps they did not trust him but sadly for all, under the new dispensation of the TTFA everyone had a voice, each person could speak and even if not heard by dissenting voices, the advent of social media and political one-upmanship meant their views would be made public somewhere else, over time it would become toxic. John-Williams believed in his idea because he was a football man, rich in the history of the Pro League with W Connection and willing to invest his money where his mouth is. And Fifa all this time lurking in the background would have again taken note and sharpen their pencils after all this was T&T the country of Austin” Jack “ Warner, a man they now despised because of what they believed he had done to them (interestingly not for them).

As well a change in the leadership of FIFA, with Giovanni Infantino seeking out and getting John- Williams support in his FIFA presidency would have made the FIFA internal thrust to move in on T&T, possibly get a stay of execution. Infantino was elected President of FIFA in February 2016.

Thus until November 2019 when the Home of football was opened, all Normalization thoughts and talks were averted or discontinued. So like Tim Kee, John-Williams had avoided the hammer by not only mere strategy but also I suggest by listening to advice from others.

William Wallace wins in 2019 in a competitive but fair election on the backdrop of not only change but also ideas and promises as well.

The country is ready and waiting, but not for what comes next, after several logical proposals for new staffing and roles, comes the thought that there is no money to fund such. Where are the FIFA money, the FIFA support, and the FIFA grant?

FIFA’s handle though was over, they were no longer directly involved, not visiting, not checking the facility, not checking the payments, not readily in discussion with the TTFA and that was now going to be a concern. But the question has to be - Why should it? This was a facility that was to be an income generator eventually through the hotel and a planned income generator entertainment centre as well, like football fields to rent or lease out. But that never materialize because of questions raised by the newly appointed team on the facility and eventually the publicly endorsed closure of the reported $2 million US facility.

FIFA’s rationale for implementing the Normalization committee has been questioned in light of the words expressed on my programme by President Wallace and the General Secretary Ramdhan and the apparent assurances given to both by Fifa officials just over three weeks ago. Just as I told both men, they needed to get those thoughts and opinions in writing because at this stage they mean little.

Ramdhan shoots from the hip and talks from the heart, they are a good pair at times, because they are both passionate but again in this football environment that is Trinidad and Tobago where egos exist, there are always people trying to shut you down for your beliefs because it was not theirs.

The days of just rolling in and expecting no questions are gone. Communication works both ways and not just one alone. There is a sense that Wallace and Ramdhan may want what is best for our football and so too did John-Williams and Tim Kee but the difference may just be how each proceeded in this regard and also who was in charge of Fifa at the time. Tim Kee was the President during the rough days of Fifa investigation and changing of the guards while John-Williams supported the incumbent.

Sadly both Wallace and Ramdhan missed the opportunity to stake their intentions and claims personally with both the President of FIFA and CONCACAF in November

Lastly, FIFA in this environment will find it difficult to select persons who will be able to withstand what may come next one way or the other unless they can get the – buy-in – of the public by themselves being open and transparent with all the information in their possession. It is the only way forward and let our hopes they realize that before Trinidad and Tobago pay the ultimate price. It may also be extremely difficult to convince professionals of FIFA way unless they can explicitly detail their findings and objectives and not hide behind innuendos. It may be asking a lot of them, but we the people of this country – deserve no less than that.



Baptiste has officially sold out... extremely disappointing ...

Offline Controversial

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Re: FIFA appoints normalisation committee for Trinidad and Tobago football
« Reply #117 on: March 26, 2020, 12:21:48 AM »
I wrote a sort of article/opinion piece a week ago and submitted it to a journalist with a well-known media outlet in T&T.  I did so under my real name as related to my Caribbean football site with a preface explaining my relation to the game in the region -- it appears it was not published, so I thought I'd share it here

Time for the CFU to Grow Some Teeth and Support Ousted TTFA

The date was 13 November 2016, 8:46 PM in Chicago, 10:46 PM in Trinidad and Tobago and Haiti had just beaten St. Kitts and Nevis 2-0 in CFU Caribbean Cup qualification.  The match had finished 0-0 in at the end of normal time, but due to tournament rules stating that there would be no matches could end in a draw, Haiti scored twice in extra time, aided by a red card to their opponents for a moment of absolute madness.  This result left Haiti second in Group 2 of Round 3 of the qualifying competition, with the three best runners up from the four, three-team groups in this round qualifying for a “5th Place Playoff.”  The result left Haiti level with Antigua and Barbuda in their respective groups, each in second place with three points, a goal difference of minus one, Haiti appearing to be occupying the final playoff spot with four goals scored to Antigua’s two. 

Very quickly, however, a question arose about which side should go through – Haiti claiming they should go through by virtue of goals scored, Antigua and Barbuda saying that Haiti’s three points, coming after what normally would have been a 0-0 draw, should have seen the Benna Boys go through.  Messages from people within each country’s Football Association showed that neither was clear about the competition rules or which country should go through.  Messages to organizers at the Caribbean Football Union quickly revealed that no one within the organization was certain of which side should go through.  After days of well-publicized confusion, CFU referred the matter to CONCACAF, who ultimately decided that Haiti would go through.  The most damning aspect of the whole affair was that the CFU had clearly not learned their lesson from the globally-infamous, farcical match between Grenada and Barbados at the same tournament in 1994 -- video of which has been viewed over two million times on YouTube – the CFU being fortunate that the exact situation did not reoccur in 2016 had a team needed to extend play beyond 90 minutes for any reason. 

CONCACAF’s reaction to the absurdity was swift -- though there is evidence their subsequent actions were already planned.  In March 2017, they opened an office in Jamaica and quickly took control of all of the region’s competitions.  Gone were the CFU Caribbean Cup and CFU Club Championship, to be replaced by the CONCACAF-backed Nations League, Caribbean Club Championship, and Caribbean Shield.  After this power move, the Caribbean Football Union, for all intents and purposes, faded to oblivion.

The merits of CONCACAF’s complete takeover of football in the region are debatable.  Without question, the CFU following the 2011 corruption scandal, was at a low ebb.  After a landmark partnership with Digicel for the 2006-2010 Caribbean Championships/Caribbean Cups which saw massive local promotion of the tournament, as well as highlights packages and live matches broadcast around the world, subsequent tournaments were poorly covered both locally and internationally and, as demonstrated, poorly organized.  With the region’s hegemon, Jack Warner, removed from power, along with his acolytes throughout FAs in the region, a relative power vacuum saw the region begin to drift listlessly. Without doubt, many would point out that CONCACAF’s Nations League has been a positive move for football in the Caribbean, with 100% participation from all member FAs a big improvement on past tournaments, when many national teams often went years without playing so much as an international friendly. 

While the Nations League has been an improvement, at least on the pitch, fundamental problems persist throughout the Caribbean.  On a personal level, I have been very vocal in my criticisms of top-level football governance, with a few notable exceptions who I would not want to tar with this broad brush, of FAs across the Caribbean.  (I must categorically state that this is not a criticism of the people working, often in volunteer roles, in the everyday operations of FAs and football in the region).  To lay bare here the laundry list of fundamental ways that the game across the region must be handled more professionally in order to progress would be unproductive and would likely require another lengthy article.  Progress on basic aspects of the game is well within reach for many FAs – indeed, it has already been seen in some corners -- and in many cases would not be very difficult to attain, but to do so would require upsetting the status quo, which many are not willing to do.  It is my belief that, if the region, or even an individual FA, is to make any positive strides forward, it must do so under its own impetus. 
As such, until Tuesday, my biggest criticisms of the past two Concacaf regimes in relation to Caribbean football, would have been their general apathy toward promoting the game in region.  This was perhaps best-evidenced at the Caribbean Shield competition, a second-tier international club tournament featuring the non-professional domestic clubs in the region.  For the last two editions of the Shield, Concacaf has featured little-to-zero coverage on their website in terms of match reports or match data, and what little there has been has been rife with errors, such as incorrect results or players being given as playing for the wrong team.  Media coverage such as live streaming of matches or even live updates from matches has been non-existent from Concacaf, despite the fact that at least one broadcaster confirmed that they had offered to stream these matches.  For these players, the amateur and semi-professionals who are in the most dire need of exposure, the Shield has been a major failure on Concacaf’s part.  Even on the most-laudable aspects of Concacaf’s changes, there was cause for eye-rolling, such as when the ignorant commentators on the Nations League broadcasts would, amongst other basic errors, mispronounce the names of the teams playing (e.g. “an-geel-lah”, “ant-teeg-gwah and bar-boo-dah”, “gwah-duh-loo-pay”, “duh-min-ick-cah”, etc.).  These sorts of issues -- which now pervade Concacaf’s coverage of the game in the region, yet had been rendered largely non-existent in Caribbean football until the aforementioned 2011 corruption scandal occurred -- could perhaps have been written off as pedantic or punctilious given other far larger positive strides, such as the aforementioned Nations League.

This all changed on Tuesday with FIFA’s announcement that, in conjunction with Concacaf, the new, William Wallace-led TTFA executive had been ousted in favor of a FIFA-selected normalisation committee.  In general, I am not against FIFA’s intervention in the region.  In fact, I welcomed their decision to intervene against the deeply corrupt, Osiris Guzman-run FA in the Dominican Republic in 2018 with open arms.  However, the blatant imperialistic overtones and clearly unethical aspects of this decision against the TTFA were laid bare in the media almost immediately and do not bear repeating here.  The most galling aspect of this decision was that the William Wallace-led TTFA, after only three months, had been a bright spot in Caribbean football, namely with their push for the transparency and accountability that have been so badly lacking in both Trinidad and Tobago as well as most other FAs across the region.  Another clear difference between this case and the aforementioned Dominican Republic case, was the massive difference in local public opinion about the respective FAs.  As someone who had already become disillusioned with the poor governance of the game in the region, for this decision to be taken against a new FA that was taking positive, almost unheard of, steps towards progress was unconscionable.

It is with the above in mind that I would call on the 30 remaining member FAs of the Caribbean Football Union to unite behind the ousted TTFA administration as they take their case against FIFA to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.  Without question, I would understand that there might be hesitancy from individual FAs to “upset the apple cart” in view of their own interests in relation to Concacaf and FIFA.  To be one of the possibly-few to stick their head above the parapet would be a risk that I have no doubt many, all being well, would rather not make.  With that in mind, a strong, reunited CFU would leave the organization with 31 Concacaf members – a large majority in the region – and 25 FIFA members, which would be a force to be reckoned with as far as the global governing body is concerned.  If the CFU were successful with such an action, it could then begin to chart their own course forward without fear of bullying from their “big brothers” at Concacaf and FIFA – and would also help protect themselves from similar action in the future.  For the sake of football in Trinidad and Tobago, as well as the Caribbean as a whole, I hope the CFU will do so.




Nice article  :beermug: informative

I would add that our corrupt govts have added to our plight and have not contributed to sport and football to help us get rid of these parasites bc they themselves are also parasites

Offline Controversial

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Re: FIFA appoints normalisation committee for Trinidad and Tobago football
« Reply #118 on: March 26, 2020, 12:28:49 AM »
Opinion: FIFA article 8.2 promotes bullying
By Paul-Andre Walker (digicelsportsmax.com)


The Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) is the most powerful sporting body in the world and it should be.

FIFA is in control of 211 football associations throughout the world, in a sport that is the most popular and profitable on the globe.

However, the association hasn’t always used that power in the most judicious ways and recently went through a harrowing couple of years with evidence of widespread corruption beating down on its reputation.

Many bans and jail sentences later, FIFA has tried to change its image with new, progressive bosses with a more inclusive management style.

But, in truth, FIFA is a fiefdom and that was made very clear in the events in Trinidad and Tobago over the last week.

The Trinidad and Tobago Football Association’s (TTFA) board does not exist anymore and its president, scratch that, former president, looks set for a lengthy legal battle to change that.

I do not want to get into the who is right and who is wrong, even though there are questions FIFA should answer.

Here are the facts as we know them.

An arm of FIFA called the Bureau of the FIFA Council investigated the financial affairs of the TTFA, which had just gone through the process of electing a new president in William Wallace just over three months before.

According to the council’s findings, the TTFA was in bad shape financially, so bad, that it risked the possibility of insolvency if the situation were not arrested.

Further, the council says it found that there was no plan to assuage the situation, leading it to replace the TTFA’s board with a normalization committee that would be in place for a maximum of two years after which it would hold elections to create a new board with its own mandate.

On an interim basis, FIFA installed former TTFA Finance Manager Tyril Patrick to oversee the day-to-day activities of the organization before the normalization committee could be properly vetted, organized and begin to work.

According to FIFA, that normalization committee would be given a mandate to:
1. Run the TTFA’s daily affairs;
2. Establish a debt repayment plan that is implementable by the TTFA;
3. Review and amend the TTFA Statutes (and other regulations where necessary) and to ensure their compliance with the FIFA Statutes and requirements before duly submitting them for approval to the TTFA Congress;
4. Organise and conduct elections of a new TTFA executive committee for a four-year mandate.
 
But today, the TTFA has no direction as interim boss, Patrick, declined the position after lawyers for Wallace wrote to him, calling his appointment illegal, or at the very least unconstitutional.

In fact, the former TTFA boss has not taken his ousting lying down and is contemplating taking his grouses to the Court of Arbitration for Sport, pointing out that FIFA has ignored his plans to get the TTFA out of debt and is claiming prejudice against his administration, pointing first up to the timing of the ‘coup d’etat’ and the implications of a friendship with the TTFA’s previous boss, as well as inconsistencies regarding a FIFA-TTFA joint project dubbed ‘The Home of Football’.   

I won’t look at any of that, however. I am more interested in the entrenched laws that allow FIFA to make a decision of this nature.

Caribbean Football Union (CFU) president, Randy Harris sympathises with the ousted TTFA administration but believes FIFA well within their rights to install a normalization committee.

Harris is right because of article 8.2 of the FIFA statute.

Article 8.2 states: ‘Executive bodies of member associations may under exceptional circumstances be removed from office by the Council in consultation with the relevant confederation and replaced by a normalisation committee for a specific period of time’.

It is here that I have a problem though.

I suppose, FIFA, as arbiters of the sport, must have in its bylaws, appropriate actions to ensure the continued growth of the sport throughout the world, but I find this article distasteful.

The article admits that the council is removing an ‘Executive’ body which has been duly elected by administrators of the sport within a country. This means, FIFA is saying it reserves the right to ignore the democracy of an entity when it has a mind to do so.

I say ‘has a mind’, because it is the council who decides what is an ‘exceptional circumstance’ and in this instance, it very well might be. But the fact that it is FIFA making this judgement, is problematic.

Each Member Association has elections and it is there that they decide if the fate of their organization can be managed by its leaders. It should certainly not be as easy as it was for FIFA to overturn that decision.

It means, in essence, if a Member Association does not operate its own affairs just the way FIFA says it should, and each country has a different set of circumstances to deal with that could mean varying ways of operating such affairs, then you could find that you have no say.

Harris pointed to this fact in a radio interview with Trinidad and Tobago’s i955 FM’s ISports radio, saying “The Trinidad and Tobago FA has found itself in a sad situation which all of us in the Caribbean could be in tomorrow.”

Therein lies my problem. This particular ‘takeover’ may very well be warranted with the TTFA in debt to the tune of TT$50 million, the question is, who decides this, and how can it be that ‘little’ Member Associations have no say in deciding whether or not they need outside help?

You can’t just ignore a lot of facts and just state they are right lol that’s BS

He’s not taking into context so many factors

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Re: FIFA appoints normalisation committee for Trinidad and Tobago football
« Reply #119 on: March 26, 2020, 12:32:59 AM »
The unmasking of Andre Baptiste,  is it?

The unmasking of many