FFB holds extraordinary congress... accomplishes nothing Print E-mail
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Thursday, 07 September 2017 00:00

The internal struggle over leadership of the Football Federation of Belize (FFB) appears to have gone dormant, at least until the elections become the highest priority once again. The FFB held an extraordinary congress on Saturday, September 2, and all the delegates showed up, allowing for quorum to be reached.

The major business of the day were some important items which the congress couldn’t address on July 24 and 25, 2017, 9 weeks ago, when the delegates staged a protest and forced the congress meeting to be cancelled. At that time, they were not prepared to move forward with the elections for president and vice-president because they did not agree with the Electoral Committee’s decision to disqualify Sergio Chuc from running for president.

So, there were outstanding housekeeping matters that only the highest decision making body in the FFB could make. Since all the delegates showed up, they held a 6-hour discussion to approve the minutes of their 2016 congress, along with the President’s 2016 activity report. The 2015 financial statements for the FFB were provisionally approved until it can be verified that the accounting firm which conducted the audit was appointed by the Congress. Among the other approvals from the congress were the 2016 financials, the Budget for 2017, and the FFB’s strategic plan.

When it came to election-related matters, the extraordinary congress had to abandon those. They were supposed to replace the electoral committee, and the electoral appeals committee. These 2 judicial bodies in local football cannot be removed, however, without proper justification. The FFB statutes demand that due process be given, and since the dismissal of these committees did not have well-outlined reason, the congress did not address their replacement.

The congress was also supposed to set up an ethics committee which would examine each candidate who wants to run for elections of the FFB’s executive posts. A shortlist was prepared for the most suitable candidates, but again, the congress had to put that agenda item aside. The FFB statutes say that for the chairman and vice chairman of any committee to be installed, they need to be elected, with the presence of the electoral committee. Since the congress was pushing to replace the members on this current electoral committee, they were not present for the extraordinary congress, and so the delegates had to abandon that agenda item as well.

So, the leadership of the FFB has still not stabilized, and FIFA has already addressed the delay in electing a president and a vice president. In a letter dated, August 30, 2017, the FIFA Secretary General wrote to the FFB asking for things to be expedited.

That letter says, “We were surprised to learn that you intend to organize elections for the president and the vice-president… ‘no later than 23 June, 2018’. We believe this goes against the discussions held in the margins of the failed FFB ordinary congress on 24 June 2016 between the FIFA/CONCACAF delegates and the FFB leadership. We remind you that according to the decision of the FIFA Member Associations Committee of 14 March 2016, the FFB needs to revise its statutes in order to bring them in line with the FIFA/CONCACAF Statutes and requirements by the end of April 2018. In order to implement this decision, it is crucial that a fully elected FFB executive committee is in place. We would therefore kindly urge you to provide us with a new timeline for the timely holding of the election of the president and vice president as soon as possible following the extraordinary congress of 2 September 2017, but certainly before the end of November 2017.”

The Acting President of the FFB, Marlon Kuylen, told the press that they are asking advice from FIFA and CONCACAF on the best way to address the urgent need of elections for president and vice president .