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‘United TTFA’ urges DJW not to enter long term contracts, promises slate for Nov election

The group of football stakeholders united in a bid to unseat Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA) president David John-Williams is urging him to ‘refrain from issuing long term contracts to his chosen’ in an effort to manage the debt burden of the administration.

The group, which now refers to itself as ‘United TTFA’, issued a press statement tonight in the wake of another expensive courtroom defeat by the John-Williams-led body, which was ordered to pay over TT$5 million to former technical director Kendall Walkes.

Photo: Former TTFA technical director and National Senior Team player Kendall Walkes.

The release was sent by TTFA Board member and Trinidad and Tobago Super League (TTSL) president Keith Look Loy and also acknowledged the endorsement of: Anthony Harford (NFA president), Clynt Taylor (Central FA general secretary), William Wallace (SSFL president) and Susan Joseph-Warrick (WoLF president), as well as Sam Phillip (ex-Pro League chairman) and Raymond Tim Kee (ex-TTFA president).

“The list of legal matters that have been created by the TTFA President’s intractable and reckless behaviour in addressing sensitive contractual matters is long,” stated the United TTFA. “Kendall Walkes, Carolina Morace, Anton Corneal, Sheldon Phillips, Stephen Hart… The list is long and still, several matters remain to be resolved by the courts.

“The debt burden, already unbearable at an estimated TT$30 million, will only increase. The responsibility for this increasingly untenable predicament rests entirely and squarely at the feet of the TTFA President.”

Ironically, with the exception of former Women’s National Senior Team head coach Carolina Morace, the examples of John-Williams’ contractual issues all involved staff initially hired by his predecessor Tim Kee. Still, the High Court repeatedly found fault in the way the current TTFA boss tried to wriggle free or simply ignore existing deals.

“The Association does not need more legal problems,” said the release tonight. “With the Association’s elections to be fought in November, we call on the President to refrain from issuing long term contracts to his chosen, the duration of which will outlast his administration.

Photo: Soca Warriors head coach Dennis Lawrence (far right) poses with TTFA president David John-Williams (second from right), team manager Richard Piper (second from left) and Camara David (far left) in 2018.
(Copyright Alan V Crane/CA-Images/Wired868)

“This would be unethical and burdensome on the new administration, which should enjoy the freedom to select its own personnel.”

United TTFA vowed to reveal its slate ‘within the next days’.

On 4 July, when the group announced its intention to run against John-Williams, the stakeholders promised to ‘present a roadmap for the game, which will be open for consultation with the football fraternity and the wider public’. Look Loy tried to explain why that has not materialised as yet.

“We are still engaged in the internal discussion regarding the final slate, which we intend to have reflect the broad sectors and interests of all football,” said Look Loy. “We wont release our plan until after nomination day. They have no ideas and we are not giving them ours. That’s what Selby [Browne’s] nonsensical consultation was about. To try to find some ideas.”

(United TTFA statement)

United TTFA views with deepening concern the ever increasing debt of the Football Association.

The recent judgement of the High Court in favour of former Technical Director Kendall Walkes, is the latest unnecessary addition to the Association’s debt burden occasioned by the bad judgement of the Association’s president. The fact is that FIFA, by letter dated 10 February 2016, counselled TTFA to ‘review and redo the [Walkes contract]’. Instead, Walkes was illegally dismissed.

Photo: FIFA president Gianni Infantino (right) and TTFA president David John-Williams at a press conference at the Ato Boldon Stadium in Couva on 10 April 2017.
(Courtesy Sean Morrison/Wired868)

The list of legal matters that have been created by the TTFA President’s intractable and reckless behaviour in addressing sensitive contractual matters is long. Kendall Walkes. Carolina Morace. Anton Corneal. Sheldon Phillips. Stephen Hart. The list is long and still, several matters remain to be resolved by the courts. The debt burden, already unbearable at an estimated TTD 30 million, will only increase. The responsibility for this increasingly untenable predicament rests entirely and squarely at the feet of the TTFA President.

The Association does not need more legal problems. With the Association’s elections to be fought in November, we call on the President to refrain from issuing long term contracts to his chosen, the duration of which will outlast his administration. This would be unethical and burdensome on the new administration, which should enjoy the freedom to select its own personnel.

United TTFA will announce its slate of candidates for the November elections within the next days.

Onward to November.

Signatories:

Anthony Harford, NFA President

Keith Look Loy, TTSL President

Sam Phillip, Former TTPL Chairman

Clynt Taylor, CFA General Secretary

Raymond Tim Kee, Former TTFA President

William Wallace, SSFL President

Susan Joseph-Warrick, WOLF President

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