Dawn Warrick, mother of the late national Under-20 football captain, Marvin Lee, says she feels sorry for former Concacaf president Jack Warner as allegations of corruption during his tenure surfaced at Friday’s Concacaf Congress and ultimately cost him his post as National Security Minister.
Warner has also resigned as chairman of the United National Congress.
Warrick, whose son was paralysed while playing for Trinidad and Tobago in an Under-20 World Cup qualifier against the United States in 2001, said she will always be grateful for the support Warner gave to her son following his injury.
Lee collided with American Landon Donovan on the field of play in March 2001 and suffered a career-ending neck injury. Warner and the Trinidad and Tobago Football Federation (TTFF) spared no expenses in taking care of Lee’s medical bills as well as assisting in his rehabilitation. But yesterday Warrick said she was shocked to witness Warner’s fall from grace.
“I was a bit taken aback (with the news). I felt a bit hurt and sorry for him...I will remember him as someone who was honest and helpful. I think the whole of Trinidad and Tobago knows he was there for my son,” she said.
Warrick noted, however, that despite all he does done for football in the region, with these new developments, Warner’s image has been tainted.
“People must remember that everything you do will come back to haunt you,” she declared.
Meanwhile, former national defender, Brent Sancho, has called for a full- scale investigation into the allegations surrounding Warner following his resignation as a Government Minister on Sunday night.
Warner stepped down from the post just two days after a report coming out of the Congress in Panama made several damning allegations about him.
Sir David Simmons, chairman of Concacaf’s Integrity Committee, described Warner’s reign as president as riddled with “fraudulent management” and noted that how he came into ownership of the Centre of Excellence in Macoya was cause for serious concern. Yesterday Sancho, who on Friday had called for Warner to resign, said he welcomed Warner’s resignation. He believes there are a lot more people who have questions to answer and only an investigation will be able to reveal the truth.
“When you look at the issues raised at the Congress involving the Centre of Excellence ownership and the money that can’t be accounted for with the TTFF, there are a lot of similarities. There are people from all over that have turned their heads the other way. Warner couldn’t have accomplished all he could without help,” he argued.
Asked to comment on the legacy left by Warner after over 20 years in football administration, Sancho was unsure of what mark the 70-year-old left behind.
“It’s hard to pin a legacy when there is no transparency. I will hold judgement on that for the while. It’s sad because with a man of his stature, you would have thought it automatic he would leave a great legacy,” he said.