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Court allows Walkes to empty TTFA’s coffers, accounts to be unfrozen within days

Former Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA) technical director Kendall Walkes has the high court’s permission to empty the bank accounts of the local football body.

Walkes got the green light yesterday after the TTFA’s accounts were frozen for close to a month as the result of a garnishee order by the ex-employee. Walkes’ attorney, Melissa Roberts-John, confirmed that she is waiting for the registrar to sign off the court’s order before she can make the withdrawal—a formality that has been complicated due to the Covid-19 pandemic, which prompted many workplaces to operate with a skeleton staff.

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

Roberts-John hopes to execute the court order by the end of the week. At present, the TTFA has roughly TT$300,000 in its accounts, while Walkes is owed just over TT$5 million.

“It is nothing much, but every drop fills the bucket,” Roberts-John told Wired868. “It sends a message to the TTFA because I don’t think they want all their line of creditors to do what we did.”

The attorney confirmed that the TTFA will regain control of their accounts once it is emptied. However, Walkes has the option of seeking a second garnishee order depending on discussions between both parties related to the balance of the debt.

The situation mirrors a successful order taken by Roberts-John against the TTFA last year, which was done on behalf of the former National Futsal Team players and staff.

“Now, we will write the TTFA requiring payment for the outstanding balance [for Walkes],” said the attorney. “If nothing comes of that, we can seek a further order.”

Photo: TTFA president William Wallace (far right), general secretary Ramesh Ramdhan (second from right) and technical director Dion La Foucade (second from left) talk to Women’s U-20 Team manager Maylee Attin-Johnson during practice at the Ato Boldon Stadium training field in Couva on 7 February 2020.
(Copyright Daniel Prentice/Wired868)

The TTFA was not represented in the proceedings, although only representatives for Walkes and the football body’s bank were obliged to be at the high court.

Wired868 was unable to reach TTFA president William Wallace or general secretary Ramesh Ramdhan for comment. Wallace and his vice-presidents, Clynt Taylor, Sharon Joseph-Warrick and Sam Phillip, were unceremoniously ordered to vacate office today after Fifa announced that it will install a normalisation committee on the island. (Click HERE for further information.)

Roberts-John said Walkes has been exasperated by the ‘poor communication’ of the TTFA in relation to their matter. However, she stressed that they remain willing to reach a settlement with the sporting body.

“Hopefully this is a wake-up call,” said Roberts-John. “We wrote them on 21 February 2020 with our proposal and they acknowledged receipt on 27 February and said they will revert to me once they have a figure in mind. And that was their last response.

“[…] We have heard nothing about our proposal since, which doesn’t surprise me anymore. But we are still willing to negotiate—that has not been taken off the table.”

Photo: (From left) S&G director Omar Hadeed, TTFA president William Wallace and Soca Warriors head coach Terry Fenwick during a media launch on 9 March 2020.
(via TTFA Media)

The TTFA closed its offices for this week as a health precaution to help prevent the spread of Covid-19’. At present, all national team training sessions and screenings have also been postponed due to the pandemic.

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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One comment

  1. You are so wright cuz,sometimes you have,to put your foot down,to get the message across.You are some what like me don’t like been the,ball in a bucket water.