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TTFA disconnected: Office staff unpaid and phone lines cut

Trinidad and Tobago Football Federation (TTFF) president Raymond Tim Kee’s election promise of a new dawn and an influx of funding from the private and public sector continues to sound hollow in the face of the football body’s continuing financial crisis.

Do not bother phoning the TTFA to enquire about its health either. The football body’s telephones were disconnected over a week ago due to non-payment while the office staff has not been paid for the last two months.

TTFA general secretary Sheldon Phillips admitted that the football body is still struggling but suggested that these issues will be addressed in a few days when the first tranche of a FIFA $4.8 million (US$750,000) cash injection becomes available.

Photo: Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA) Raymond Tim Kee (right) enjoys some conversation at the 2014 FIFA Congress in Sao Paulo, Brazil. (Copyright TTFA Media)
Photo: Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA) Raymond Tim Kee (right) enjoys some conversation at the 2014 FIFA Congress in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
(Copyright TTFA Media)

“Unfortunately, until we get our FIFA funding, we just have the basic functions of operating an office,” Phillips told Wired868. “Our dues are not being paid and there are certainly some issues being addressed…

“Some of the funding we were promised from the corporate and public sector hasn’t really come.”

By Phillips’ own calculations, the TTFA is at least $28 million in debt with the 2006 World Cup players, former head coach Russell Latapy and ex-technical director Anton Corneal among its more prominent debtors.

On 16 May 2014, the aggrieved “Soca Warriors” publicly vowed to initiate bankruptcy proceedings against the TTFA within 14 days. That deadline expired over a month ago and Phillips suggested the impending cash injection does not necessarily mean good news for the former World Cup players either.

Last year, the TTFA paid the Warriors from its annual FIFA $1.6 million (US$250,000) membership grant; but Phillips warned that this will not happen this time.

“There are significant strings on that money,” said Phillips, “which is that it has to be spent on development such as youth programmes and regional associations and so on…

“Last time, we made a specific request (to FIFA) beforehand to use the money to pay players. But that (option) is not available to us this time.

“The needs of our regional associations and national teams are so great. And while we are talking to the players, we do have an association to run…”

Photo: TTFA president Raymond Tim Kee (second from left) embraces 2006 World Cup player Kelvin Jack while teammates Brent Sancho (far left), Cyd Gray (second from right) and David Atiba Charles look on in May 2013. The TTFA has not fulfilled its obligations to the World Cup players since its initial payment to the players. (Courtesy Wired868)
Photo: TTFA president Raymond Tim Kee (second from left) embraces 2006 World Cup player Kelvin Jack while teammates Brent Sancho (far left), Cyd Gray (second from right) and David Atiba Charles look on in May 2013.
The TTFA has not fulfilled its obligations to the World Cup players since its initial payment to the players.
(Courtesy Wired868)

Phillips reiterated that the financial crisis facing the present TTFA executive is one it inherited; despite the fact that Tim Kee was a TTFA vice-president for over a decade before he temporarily left the body between 2010 and 2012.

The general secretary also made an apparent about-turn on whether the TTFA will try to recoup funds transferred from the football body to bank accounts controlled by its former special advisor and disgraced FIFA vice-president Jack Warner.

A TTFA release, on May 17, claimed that the football body would not try to recoup the funds since the matter was allegedly statute barred and a legal challenge would be too expensive and resource draining.

“The TTFA would also like to address other erroneous assertions attributed to the 2006 player case,” stated the TTFA’s May release, “namely the narrative that our organization has the ability to target past leaders and advisors of the former TTFF to recoup $100 million in funds accumulated during the 2006 World Cup campaign.

“Firstly, even if the TTFA was inclined to engage in an expensive and resource- draining legal battle to recover any amount of funds from the 2006 world cup campaign, the statute of limitations to engage in such an endeavor expired some time ago…”

Phillips’ stance brought an immediate and sharp rebuke from the Warriors’ attorney, Michael Townley, who countered that the TTFA was talking “nonsense.”

“There is no statute of limitations on a claim on breach of trust which is what Warner has (allegedly) done,” Townley told Wired868. “Warner was a quasi-trustee for the TTFA and he was supposedly taking their money and putting into his own accounts…

“The statute applies to cases under contract law or tort and negligence. If you take someone’s money and don’t give it back, you cannot just laugh and walk away a free man after four years.

“The TTFF claim is breach of trust/misfeasance and breach of duty by a shadow Director. These claims are not subject to time limits.”

Photo: Ex-FIFA vice-president Jack Warner (left) and Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar share a light moment during the 2010 FIFA Under-17 Women's World Cup in Trinidad and Tobago. (Courtesy FIFA.com)
Photo: Ex-FIFA vice-president Jack Warner (left) and Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar share a light moment during the 2010 FIFA Under-17 Women’s World Cup in Trinidad and Tobago.
(Courtesy FIFA.com)

Today, Phillips countered his own release as he insisted that any suggestion the TTFA was not trying to recoup misappropriated funds was a media-fuelled inaccuracy. He claimed the football body hoped to recover State funds that were provided to the Warriors before the 2006 World Cup but subsequently misused.

“We are looking at State funds that were provided to the organisation during the build up to the World Cup,” said Phillips.

About Lasana Liburd

Lasana Liburd
Lasana Liburd is the managing director and chief editor at Wired868.com and a journalist with over 20 years experience at several Trinidad and Tobago and international publications including Play the Game, World Soccer, UK Guardian and the Trinidad Express.

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87 comments

  1. Terry Fenwick eh, Havenly Father please leave Terry over there in Belgium so that more of our local players can get professional contracts abroad eh, so that our players standards can raise to a higher level and then return to our sweet country and represent our national team in Jesus name Amen.

  2. @Pierre: I am not saying that Tim is an angel but the TTFA has definitely been much more transparent regards money coming in or lack of and how it is being spent since he took over.

  3. TTFF give terry fenwick the senior national team W connection head coach our National U-17 & 20 or 21’s please….

  4. The money is to pay criminals and gang leaders

  5. They should be shot for their incompetence and malfeasance and the organisation wound up.

    A complete break from the past us required.

  6. Wired868 is probably the best place to find out what is happening behind the scenes though. Good and bad.
    We don’t just regurgitate press releases here. 😉

  7. Complaining you say? I’ll tell you now, if I had a choice Tim Kee and his lot would be voted out, tried in a court of law, declare the TTFF non-functional and inefficient, but I ain’t Sepp Blatter & Co. And btw, he is no friend of mine. I may just fb him the questions, will let you know what he says.

  8. @Maharaj: I already said that if you want a TTFA accounts update then why not ask Tim Kee to post one. Isn’t he your facebook friend? Well he is not even mines. Why not post a request on his facebook page. That shouldn’t be too difficult or even message him asking him to publish an update of the TTFA’s accounts. And thanks in advance for making yourself useful rather than just sitting down and complaining.

  9. Am just looking at the website…there’s news yes but no discussion board? Btw, who running that website?

  10. Well maybe you need to stay over there because here is about the truth and only the truth eh.

  11. So the TTFA financial statements on SocaWarriors.net?

  12. I was with SocaWarriors.net long before Wire was ever conceived and as I said Mr Wire posts links to most of his articles over there as well.

  13. Ian Socapro Henry, this town is full of cleptos, stick with Wired868, you will get everything live and direct right here.

  14. @Adrian Clarke: You need to ask Tim Kee and the TTFA for their latest accounts as I am not their accountant. What we know for sure is that they don’t have much money if they can’t afford to pay their own phone bill and office staff. Thinking about it they probably can’t afford to pay a decent accountant neither. If you are one maybe you can offer them your services for free?! 🙂

  15. And don’t let the organize crime fellas hear you saying that nah, Anil is the best thing that ever happened for them yes with his vision and baby the Life Sport program.

  16. @Pierre: I have been unimpressed with Anil as our Sports Minister even before that video of his twin brother came out.

  17. Ian you really reading what you are writing eh, like you didn’t read Mr. Live Wire and Adrian’s remarks or what ent. the TTFA will never do such thing man they all will end up in jail. steeuuppss.

  18. You not living here right? You forget how things run in this place, there’s always and enquiry going on somewhere and we hear nothing of the recommendations/actions after, no one is made to account that’s why they’re all still there.

  19. Regards the transparency issue within the TTFA, I am not putting my head on a block for Tim Kee or anyone else. If we are not happy with their accounting so far then maybe we should demand that they give us an update of all the money that has come in and all the money that has been spent for the year so far. I was of the impression that the TFFA has been doing that or are willing to do that whenever it is requested by the T&T public. Lets ask the TTFA for the latest update.

  20. Ian and if you had been a member of wired 868 eh from the inception eh, you wudda also been informed man, yuh sounding like ah JC ( just come) so you are excused man have ah good night eh and sweet dreams, Ian really good yes. hahahahaha

  21. they worst than lil chirren…a bunch of cleptos we have in this country

  22. Like mamee gone away and leave them in charge. The incompetence is too high!

  23. Ian send me a copy of the accounts please.

  24. So what you saying is that no one @ the TTFA has a calculator? Or was it another friend-friend arrangement.

  25. Ian you really sounding like someone who also didn’t believe that it was Mr. 2 pull in room 201 rolling the spliff ent, remove the cobwebs from your eyes nah man.

  26. Not that I’m ganging up on you though Ian Socapro Henry. I enjoy differing views. It keeps us all sharp. 😉

  27. Socapro, I disagree with you there. I think there is less transparency than ever before with the present executive. And I know that is saying a lot.
    I’m not saying they are worse. But I certainly don’t see transparency.

  28. These are not new faces on the football scene, they were fairly senior even when JW was involved, so if they want our money again, they better come with some real good answers so we could successfully prosecute the villains to recoup all that was stolen.

  29. and further more when the magistrate asked them to produce their accounting books in court eh, they had none to produce….look Ian you sounding like you is planted here on wired 868 yes to beg for them, but just remember it also have real police here and we know everything that is taking place in our sweet country. Them really good yes.

  30. Urmm… who was in charge when they played the Akeem Adams benefit match?…Methinks the reason don’t trust the TTFA is because we see all over this land it’s the same people always thiefing from Joe Public and trying to sound like butter wouldn’t melt in their mouth

  31. Anil went 1200% over budget didn’t he?

  32. @Maharaj: I think the TTFA has been trying to gain private sponsorship for T&T football but many of the companies don’t trust the TTFF/TTFA after dealing with Oliver Camps and Warner or are simply band-wagonists meaning they only want to put their money behind football after we are seen to be successful like how most jumped on board after we qualified for the World Cup in 2006.

  33. Ian Socapro Henry If they are transparent , why cant I see through the locked doors and view the accounts . They keep it secret.

  34. All these old codgers want to be kept men

  35. Ian and I will tell you again that I don’t need to do that because I don’t trust none of them and their lies man, like your memory short with respect to what they did with Akeem Adams (R.I.P.) eh, when they said that all the monies that they made was going to his mother’s account ent and then after plenty folks attended the game to support the cause eh, and what did they do after eh, short changed his mother. THem really good yes.

  36. Mamee does run she parlour better than this bunch…doh insult d lady.

  37. This just sad and sickening, yes! Shame on TTFA! Run like mamee parlour into de grong!

  38. Urmm.. ent Raymond Tim Kee was the Vice President when he was consorting with JW…? If their only source of income is either the gov’t or FIFA, then something real wrong here

  39. Ian how do you know that they don’t have much monies eh, like you saw their bank accounts or what eh, like Adrian Clarke said that they need to come clean and publish the accounts eh, and this is not the first time that he said so even on other threads and I agree with him 1000% Idon’t trust none of them because like Jack Warner and his cronies they know good well how to con folks and beg for plenty monies and I agree with one thing that it is about time the Mayor goes after Jackular Warner for the millions of monies that rightfully belongs to the TTFA and our 2006 World Cup players.

  40. Really a bunch of jokers, so their only source of Income is the gov’t and FIFA?

  41. Who supposed to get fired there sill and who has to get hired….. That’s other story

  42. @Adrian Clarke: The TTFA does not have much money but I believe they have been trying to be very transparent with their accounting unlike the previous regime the TTFF where JW was pulling all the strings and was siphoning off most of their money.

  43. Just remember that God does not sleep and he also does not like ugly! ENT?

  44. Warner spent the TTFA’s money on the PP government’s last election campaign and then later apologized for helping to put them into power after leaving the PP and forming his own party the ILP. However Warner is still trying to wash his hands of the TTFF after running off with most of their money.

  45. They bed to come clean . Publish their accounts and then approach the public. We would invest in our football if we knew what the money is being spent on

  46. Not surprised! Yet some folks believe that the TTFA has money.

  47. TTFA – Trinidad and Tobago Failed A……… Just fill in the dots.

  48. Didn’t the Min of Sport go 1200% over budget?