The lack of bank account access notwithstanding, Trinidad and Tobago Football Association staff are still being assured that efforts are being made to pay them.
This word came on Monday from Robert Hadad, head of the normalisation committee appointed by world governing body, FIFA.
TTFA administrative staff have not received salaries since FIFA appointed the committee in March to run the affairs of the Association instead of the elected executive headed by president William Wallace. Wallace insists that as the duly elected head of the TTFA, the body is the only one entitled to receive FIFA money. The matter of control of local football is now before the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Switzerland.
In the meantime, First Citizens Bank, at which the TTFA’s accounts are held, has refused to allow either side access to the accounts.
Meanwhile, an unsigned letter surfaced on the weekend, purportedly from staff members, pleading for Wallace to abandon his fight for control of the TTFA’s accounts.
On Monday, Hadad told the SportsMax Zone programme on cable TV network SportsMax that he had seen the letter and acknowledged that besides the office staff, technical staff had not been paid for a longer period.
He acknowledged that the TTFA is the only body that could receive FIFA cash, saying, “The associate member of FIFA is the TTFA, so they legitimately could only send the money to the TTFA.”
He also noted that, “Until I could confirm to FIFA that we have control of the bank accounts and there is no risk of garnishing, I don’t see any money coming forth.”
However, Hadad added, “we are working on other means of paying them.”
The businessman was not willing to say what other means were being considered.
However, he stated: “We are aware that we are in a pandemic and we are in very dangerous times and some people need their money, so we are working around ways of getting them their money before we have control of the bank account.”
And asked if he had anticipated opposition from the Wallace group when his committee took over, a resolute Hadad noted: “Would they have made my team’s job easier? Sure….But this is how it is and we will work through it. What I can tell you is we are here to stay and we are representing FIFA and FIFA will only send money to us.”
He added: “We were not appointed because we wanted to be appointed. We were appointed because the TTFA is in serious debt and in serious risk of insolvency and not being able to pay their debts, and FIFA, they are doing the right thing. Whether or not it should have been done before, or whatever anyone wants to say, I’m not here to judge that. I don’t know why now, what I do is now, the debt is very high and the revenue we have is not enough to pay the debt and (court) judgements are happening now…The judgements and the garnishing of the account are all not good situations to be in. So somebody had to do the job.”