Sun, Oct

Hadad eases concerns: ‘Payment was made’

Robert Hadad, chairman of the FIFA-appointed Normalisation Committee has sought to allay fears that salaries to T&T Football Association (T&TFA) coaches, players, and its staff were paid on Monday.

Concerns were raised yesterday when money did not reach the bank accounts of the coaches, with one coach who proclaimed to be the voice of the coaches, becoming verbally abusive when he contacted Guardian Media Sports for confirmation.  

Hadad cleared the air on the issue, saying: “When one bank receives the money, it gets transferred to their salary accounts and once it’s in different bank accounts, it takes a while to be processed, it takes a day, in some cases two days. So I am not in control of that but all of the money was transferred.”  

The coaches have been awaiting payment of wages since January, and despite Hadad’s statement that payment was made Monday, the coach who is yet to make his mark on the football stage in coaching became antagonistic.

According to Hadad, the players were given 100 per cent payment, while the coaches received half of what they were owed up until August, as it was what the normalisation committee could have afforded.

The coaches have been promised the rest of their monies by January. Meanwhile, the administration staff received salaries up until the end of November.

As word of the payment hit the local and international public, Hadad said he was even contacted by Mike Berry, the agent of former senior team coach Dennis Lawrence, enquiring about the payment to Lawrence, who was sacked by the William Wallace-led administration with a contract that is valid until July 2021. Lawrence, who was fired in December 2019, took his case to FIFA for re-dress.

Hadad said he could not say exactly how much is owed to Lawrence, the former national defender, but he estimated it to be a couple million dollars.

Lawrence’s two-year contract was extended in February 2019 until the end of the Gold Cup and Nation’s Cup tournaments, which was scheduled for this year but due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, has been rescheduled.

Hadad, a director at the HADCO Group of Companies, said the coaches could have contacted him for clarification of the payment: “If I am saying that you were paid, maybe you should just contact your bank and find out where the money is and when it is coming, or maybe they could just contact me and say ‘Mr Hadad, the money hasn’t reached my bank account’.  I was clear with them. Most of them got 50 per cent of what was owed to them at the end of August. That’s what we have.”

Some coaches have signed contracts while others have signed agreements with the T&TFA, courtesy deals given by the technical committee of the Wallace-led T&TFA under then committee which was chaired by Keith Look Loy, who resigned from all forms of football in October.

The coaches, who have contracts are senior team coach Terry Fenwick, Derek King (Men’s Under-20 team), Angus Eve (Men’s U-17 team), Keith Jeffrey (Men’s U-15 team), Richard Hood (Women’s U-20 and U-17 teams) and Jason Spence (Women’s U-15 team).

When contacted yesterday, both King and Eve, said that they did not see any money deposited in their bank accounts but said they understand the process of the banking system.

Meanwhile, no T&TFA staff member was willing to comment on the issue yesterday.