Wed, Aug

Hadad’s unconstitutional ‘meeting’ raises more questions on NC’s occupation of the TTFA

Fifa-appointed normalisation committee chairman Robert Hadad has come under fire again for repeat violations of the Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA) Constitution, after his invitation to members for a meeting provoked more questions about his leadership.

On Wednesday, TTFA acting general secretary Amiel Mohammed invited members to a ‘meeting’ on Zoom next Tuesday from 6pm to 7pm. The ‘forum’, according to Mohammed, will ‘feature a membership update presented by the NC on TTFA Affairs’.

Mohammed’s email, on behalf of the normalisation committee, did not include an agenda or suggest a stipulated question and answer segment, while a one hour timeframe for the body’s first meeting with members—16 months after its appointment—is farcical.

The more pressing issues that the normalisation committee are likely to face questions on include:

The TTFA’s debt repayment plans, Fifa’s desired constitutional amendments, the TTFA’s financial statements, the Soca Warriors’ disastrous 2022 World Cup qualifying campaign, details of the Bol clothing deal, details of interim head coach Angus Eve’s contract, details of Women’s National Senior Team head coach James Thomas’ contract, details of the payoff offered to former marketing manager Peter Miller, an explanation regarding Commissioner of Police Gary Griffith’s role within the TTFA and the Men’s National Senior Team, details on former head coach Terry Fenwick’s altercation with press officer Shaun Fuentes, details on former assistant coach Kelvin Jack’s altercation with player Gary Griffith III, the legal advice that underpinned the normalisation committee’s handling of the contracts it met and entered into since its appointment, a breakdown of the match fees and television revenue pocketed for the January international friendly against the United States, and an explanation regarding where the normalisation committee currently banks the Fifa subvention to the TTFA.

And, first and foremost, why is the normalisation committee refusing to adhere to the constitution by holding a general meeting?

Trinidad and Tobago Football Referees Association (TTFRA) president Osmond Downer, in a response to the normalisation committee, said he is ‘thankful for the long awaited opportunity to have a membership meeting for the stakeholders of the TTFA to be updated on the activities of the NC’. 

However, he also expressed concern about the invitation.

“What is the status or nature of this ‘meeting’?” asked Downer, in an email seen by Wired868. “From your request for members ‘to send their delegates’ email addresses’, it would appear to be a ‘general meeting’. But, what kind of general meeting?

“[…] Article 27 of the TTFA’s Constitution clearly lays out the requirements for the convening of an annual general meeting with required days notice etc. This ‘meeting’ certainly does not fulfil the requirements of Article 27.   

“[…] Again the convening of this meeting does not fulfil the requirements of article 29, for example, the requirement for ‘at least 10 days notice before the date of an EGM’.

“So, this ‘meeting’ cannot be classified as a constitutionally valid general meeting of the TTFA. Perhaps it can be labelled as an informal meeting or gathering of the members of the TTFA.”

What is the difference between a properly constituted meeting and an informal one?

The former ensures specific rights to the bodies which comprise the TTFA, as relates to the information they are due and demands they can make of local football’s current management body.

In an informal meeting, Hadad can merely share what he chooses before signing off. Such a conclave would allow the normalisation committee to claim—at least to gullible or uninformed parties—that it has met stakeholders, without offering any value to the members whose interest they are supposed to serve.

Downer’s closing sentence was instructive.

“One would presume that, at the meeting, questions and even suggestions for improvement will be allowed from the stakeholders,” said Downer.

It was half-statement, half-question. And it was telling that he saw it necessary to raise it at all.

Hadad apart, the Fifa-appointed normalisation committee comprises Judy Daniel, Nigel L Romano and Trevor Nicholas Gomez.