Kieron appoints TTFA general secretary, Paul; but faces potential constitutional issue

The Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA) announced its first major change under the tenure of new president Kieron Edwards, as Kareem Paul was unveiled as the new general secretary.

Paul replaces Amiel Mohammed, who was appointed by Fifa-appointed normalisation committee chair Robert Hadad. The TTFA release listed Paul’s start date as 1 June 2024, although news was only shared with the public this evening.

TTFA president Kieron Edwards (centre) poses with first vice-president Colin Murray (right) and ordinary member Inspector Andrew Boodoo at a Fifa Congress in Bangkok, Thailand on 16 May 2024.
(via TTFA Media)

The TTFA general secretary, according to the Constitution, is appointed by the local football’s executive committee on the proposal of the president.

The TTFA release was sparse, with just three paragraphs on Paul—which did not include his qualifications or place of employment:

  • “A chartered accountant by profession, Mr Paul brings a wealth of experience in leadership, management and finance expertise to his new role.
  • “Mr Paul is a product of the Tunapuna Government Secondary School and the Green Machine, St Augustine Secondary School, where he excelled both academically and as a sportsman, earning multiple accolades along the way.
Trinidad and Tobago forward Levi Garcia (front) trains with the Men’s National Senior Team in preparation for 2026 World Cup qualifying action against Grenada at the Hasely Crawford Stadium on 5 June 2024.
(via TTFA Media)
  • “He will now oversee the organizational strategies, policy implementation and stakeholder relations, amongst other responsibilities in his position with the TTFA. Mr Paul’s commitment and innovative approach will be invaluable as we move forward towards achieving new heights under the leadership of recently elected president Kieron Edwards and his executive.”

It is interesting that the TTFA administration felt the identity of Paul’s former school was more relevant to the football public than the fact that he is currently running for a position on the Northern Football Association (NFA) board.

On Saturday 8 June, Paul is challenging Roger Watts for the post of first ordinary member at the NFA elections, which will be observed by a three-member electoral committee that includes current TTFA vice-president Osmond Downer.

However, article 44.5 of the TTFA Constitution states that: “the general secretary shall not be a congress delegate or a member of any other body”.

Football fans enjoy the night out during the Legends vs T&T All Stars match at the Hasely Crawford Stadium in Port of Spain on 10 May 2024.
Photo: Daniel Prentice/ Wired868

Paul, in his first week on the job, already has to address a potential conflict of interest.

Although the TTFA offered nothing of Paul’s football moorings outside of a fleeting reference to the “Green Machine”, visitors at Terminix La Horquetta Rangers football matches might have noticed him as a regular in the VIP lounge at the Phase 2 ground—almost from inception.

Paul is chief accountant at National Maintenance Training and Security Company (MTS), where Rangers managing director Richard Ferguson serves as chief financial officer.

Terminix La Horquetta Rangers director Richard Ferguson (foreground) enjoys the action during an Ascension Invitational fixture against QPCC at Phase 2, La Horquetta on 11 September 2019.
Behind Ferguson to his left is Inspector Andrew Boodoo, who is also a current TTFA executive member.
Photo: Allan V Crane/ CA-Images/ Wired868

At present, Paul is listed as a Rangers director, along with TTFA ordinary member Inspector Andrew Boodoo. Edwards also served as director at Rangers up until earlier this year.

In December 2020, when Rangers goalkeeper coach Ross Russell was elected as NFA president, Paul was on his slate as first ordinary member. Wired868 understands he was a regular at meetings and is considered an affable person.

At present, Paul is standing for reelection—although he might want to revisit that decision.

Then TTFA general secretary Amiel Mohammed speaks at the TTPFL launch.
Photo: Daniel Prentice/ Wired868

He surely has enough on his plate anyway as general secretary of the cash-strapped local football body, which is allegedly behind on salary payments to staff.

Earlier this week, the TTFA issued termination letters to staff at its Home of Football.

However, Edwards has barely spoken to the media since his election and is yet to hold a press conference. So, there is little inkling—at least beyond his executive meetings—of the president’s plan for the asset, or anything else regarding the local game.

TTFA president Kieron Edwards (centre) is flanked by third vice-president Jameson Rigues (right) and ordinary member Inspector Andrew Boodoo at the Concacaf Congress in Guadeloupe on 25 May 2024.
(via TTFA Media)

The TTFA, via release, expressed “heartfelt gratitude” to its outgoing general secretary for “his exemplary service under the normalisation committee”.

“The FA is deeply appreciative of the hard work and dedication he would have brought to this role from 2021 to 2024,” stated the TTFA Media. “We extend sincere thanks and best wishes to him in his future endeavours.”

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