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John-Williams faces motion for dismissal; TTFA president must defend tenure at next AGM

Controversial Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA) president David John-Williams will be asked to defend his tenure at the local football body’s next annual general meeting with the threat of potential dismissal.

This morning, TTFA board member and Trinidad and Tobago Super League (TTSL) president Keith Look Loy officially raised a motion for the dismissal of the football president with TTFA general secretary Justin Latapy-George.

Photo: TTFA president David John-Williams (centre), media officer Shaun Fuentes (left) and new Soca Warriors coach Dennis Lawrence at the TTFA headquarters on 30 January 2017.
(Copyright Allan V Crane/TTFA)

Look Loy’s motion begins: “Whereas, the President of TTFA, David John-Williams, has presided over—indeed engineered—the calamitous deterioration of our football;

“Whereas, TTFA has been buffeted by continuous mismanagement and controversy and since the advent of David John-Williams and his officers in office on 29 November 2015…”

The document draws from article 28 and 38 of the TTFA constitution with regards to the agenda of the AGM and removal of an officer respectively. And it follows on the heels of the Eastern Football Association of Trinidad and Tobago (EFATT) membership’s removal of its own president, Linus Sanchez, after a successful no confidence motion yesterday.

Sanchez vowed to challenge his removal on the supposed grounds that the clubs which voted for his removal were not active members. Seventy eight percent of the EFATT’s electorate voted for change at the Tunapuna Government Secondary school last night and several of the clubs showed receipts for their membership fees—in an attempt to contract Sanchez’s claim.

There were some similarities with the issues highlighted by the EFATT member clubs and the concerns which dogged John-Williams throughout his tenure, such as a lack of transparency, mismanagement, deterioration in the standards of football programmes and attempts to pervert the appointment processes.

Photo: EFATT president Linus Sanchez was removed from his post on 6 September 2018 after a vote of no confidence.

Although the TTFA is cash-strapped and unable to pay its coaches, John-Williams has not appointed a finance or marketing committee in three years at the helm and appears to handle several of those functions himself.

On Saturday 23 December 2017, two years after he was elected, John-Williams finally named members for the football body’s judicial committees.

The proposed committees were as follows:

  • Disciplinary: Newton George (chair), Auldrin Neptune (vice-chair), Sushilla Jadoonanan, John Jeffrey ad Norris Ferguson (members).
  • Ethics: Cedric Neptune (chair), Cheryl Wallace (vice-chair), Dr Beverly Beckles (member).
  • Appeals: Michael Quamina (chair), Sandra Elcock-Stanisclaus (vice-chair).
  • Audit and Compliance: Rodney Smart (chair), Ann-Marie Abbott (vice-chair), Kit Kennedy (member).

Yet, nine months later, the John-Williams-led board still has not activated any of the four aforementioned committees.

The TTFA board itself is barely functional—with nearly half of its members suspended or without voting power—and does not meet with the frequency demanded by the constitution.

The TTFA’s next AGM is due to be called by October 2018.

Photo: TTFA president David John-Williams (right) performs a duet with former Calypso Monarch, Cro Cro, at the launch of the National Elite Youth Development Program at the Trinidad Hilton on 14 October 2016.

(Motion for the dismissal of the TTFA president)

7 September 2018,

Justin Latapy,

General Secretary,

TTFA.

Dear Sir,

The TTFA Constitution (2015) grants a member the right to submit a proposal for discussion at the Association’s Annual General Meeting:

“Article 28. Agenda of the Annual General Meeting

The General Secretary shall draw up the agenda based on proposals from the Board of Directors and the Members. Any proposal that a Member wishes to submit to the General Meeting shall be sent to the General Secretariat in writing, with a brief explanation, at least 40 days before the date of the Annual General Meeting.”

I hereby submit the following proposal for discussion at the 2018 Annual General Meeting of TTFA:

Photo: TTFA president and W Connection founder David John-Williams.

“Whereas, the President of TTFA, David John-Williams, has presided over—indeed engineered—the calamitous deterioration of our football;

Whereas, TTFA has been buffeted by continuous mismanagement and controversy and since the advent of David John-Williams and his officers in office on 29 November 2015, for example:

  • Unilateral decision-making by the President—“one-manism”—with no consultation of, and/or agreement by, the TTFA Board of Directors, for example contracts supposedly awarded in the “Home of Football” project, purchase of service from radio I95.5FM;
  • Steady deterioration of TTFA’s national teams’ programme—we no longer win in the international arena and are no longer a force, even in CFU;
  • Cronyism in the appointment of national teams/programmes technical and administrative staff,
  • Mismanagement of TTFA’s finances—witness the debacle of the 2016 audit, the ongoing inability to pay staff and players and to maintain programmes;
  • Frivolous accumulation of law suits and the various expenses associated with same, for example Carolina Morace, Sheldon Phillips, Stephen Hart, etc—due to poor management and illegal actions;
  • Lack of transparency in administrative and financial matters—legitimate requests for information from members almost invariably go unanswered, for example the ongoing failure to present documents from the works on the “Home of Football”;
  • Deterioration of league football—from elite to regional—and an absence of appropriate guidance and support from TTFA;
  • International shame brought upon our country by the attempt to blame the US embassy for the debacle of our women’s U-15 team being withdrawn from the Concacaf tournament, due to TTFA’s failure to secure US visas, and the Embassy’s denial of such claims.
Photo: TTFA president David John-Williams (second from right) poses with then Women’s National Senior Team coaches (from left) Nicola Williams, Carolina Morace and Elisabetta Bavagnoli at a press conference in the Ato Boldon Stadium, Couva on 1 February 2017.
(Courtesy Sean Morrison/Wired868)

Be it resolved that the 2018 TTFA Annual General Meeting dismisses the TTFA President, David John-Williams, from office, with immediate effect, in accordance with the TTFA Constitution (2015):

“Article 38: Dismissal of a person or body

  1. The General Meeting may dismiss a person or a member of a body. The Board of Directors may place the dismissal of a person or a member of a body on the agenda for the General Meeting. The Board of Directors may also dismiss a person or a member of a body provisionally. Any Board of Directors Member may submit a proposal to place such a motion for dismissal on the agenda of the Board of Directors or General Meeting.
  2. The motion for dismissal must be justified.  It will be sent to the Members of the Board of Directors and/or to the Members along with the agenda.
  3. The person or body in question has the right to defend him or herself.
  4. The motion for dismissal shall be decided by means of secret ballot. For the motion to be passed, a majority of three quarters of the valid votes is required.
  5. The person or body dismissed (provisionally) is relieved of his or its functions with immediate effect.
Photo: Sport Minister Shamfa Cudjoe (right) and TTFA president David John-Williams inspect the Home of Football project in Couva on 20 August 2018.
(Courtesy Ministry of Sport and Youth Affairs)

I expect this proposal to be tabled at the 2018 Annual General Meeting—unless said meeting is called prior to 17 October 2018.

Best regards.

About Lasana Liburd

Lasana Liburd
Lasana Liburd is the CEO and 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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