September 2 – The chair of the Trinidad and Tobago Normalisation Committee Robert Hadad has written to the former president of the TTFA William Wallace telling him he has “completely ignored the truth”, has conducted a campaign of “misinformation and disinformation”, and in his tone is “offensive” to the people of Trinidad.
Hadad is responding to a letter sent to various confederation and FA presidents worldwide, including Asian Football Confederation boss Shaikh Salman bin Ebrahaim Al Khalifa.
The letter was a plea for support for the ousted former TTFA board and its supporters under the United TTFA banner. It outlines Wallace’s argument that they have been removed unfairly but fails to address any of the reasons transparently as to why his board was removed after just three disastrous months in office (see With time running out, United TTFA chief hunts for help from Asia’s football leaders)
Hadad is unequivocal in his condemnation of Wallace’s action, reiterating that Wallace has been told by FIFA on “numerous occasions” that he is not recognised as the TTFA president and that the only legitimate body is the Normalisation Committee, “entrusted to manage/run the affairs of the TTFA as recognised by FIFA, Concacaf and FIFA’s 211 Member Associations. Furthermore, you are not authorized to use the TTFA letterhead or any other marking for any communication or representation.” Wallace misrepresented his position, signing his letter to FAs as the president of the TTFA. He has previously corresponded using TTFA letterhead.
Hadad says: “Similar to all your correspondence and media interviews, your letter in an example of a campaign of misinformation and disinformation that you and a number of your colleagues from the removed TTFA Executive Committee, have undertaken from the inception of not only the normalization process, but as evidenced from the first day you were in office. You have completely ignored the truth and your membership.”
Hadad points out that Wallace had the opportunity to work within the FIFA system and put forward his case but chose not to do so and even withdrew his appeal from the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), the recognised court worldwide for sports dispute and the code that the TTFA signed up to as part of its FIFA membership.
“The tone and content of your letter is offensive, not only to the Normalisation Committee, but to the people of Trinidad and Tobago who are working extremely hard for the betterment of football in the country,” said Hadad. “In recent weeks players of our Senior Men’s National Team, our membership at large and other stakeholders have spoken out to you and your cohorts, to request that you do the right thing and put Trinidad and Tobago football first. You have also ignored your own government who gave you the opportunity to speak.”
The key deadline for Wallace and the TTFA is the September 16 with the requirement from FIFA that the court case in Trinidad is dropped (FIFA is currently appealing a ruling that the Trinidad and Tobago High Court is the correct jurisdiction to decide on whether FIFA’s Normalisation Committee was legally installed).
FIFA will not step back from its action, it will only step it up and Hadad warns Wallace: “The choice is very clear: do the right thing prior to the deadline of September 16th established by FIFA or continue down your path and jeopardise the futures and opportunities for our national team players and coaches, and for football as a whole in our country.”
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