Ricketts pushes back on criticism from Pillar 3 stakeholders; says some entities have not met requirements to vote at January 14 JFF election

By November 06, 2023

President of the Jamaica Football Federation Michael Ricketts, has attempted to shed some light on the latest challenge facing the JFF in relation to the sanctioning of a number of the 56 delegates that will vote for the body’s next president on January 14, 2024, to determine the way forward for football in the country.

The 56 delegates will come from three pillars and, according to Ricketts, the JFF held an emergency congress on Sunday to sanction the Pillar-Three delegates.

Ricketts explained that there are six entities associated with Pillar Three but of that six, only three were able to meet the requirements.

He put this down to misinterpretation of the federation’s new constitution.

“The new constitution and its articles seem to be causing a lot of issues because people are not interpreting the contents of the articles,” he told SportsMax.tv on Monday, explaining that this was also an issue at Sunday’s meeting.  “What happens now is that there are certain criteria based on the articles that entities must meet for them to qualify for voting at the congress. They were listed! Of all the applicants, three would’ve met all the requirements.”

The president says the JFF received applications from two different coaches associations, a former players association and the beach-football association.

One of the coaches associations, headed by former senior women’s coach Vin Blaine, was not considered as it has been defunct for some time.

“The coaches', where one Mr. Vin Blaine, who is not even domiciled in Jamaica, says that he heads a coaches association with four listed persons. One of those persons does not live here and one of those gentlemen said that he is not a part of the association which has gone defunct for years. They have not been operative,” Ricketts told SportsMax.tv on Monday.

The other association, comprising current active head coaches, met all the requirements and was approved.

“The other one is current and includes practicing coaches now like Merron Gordon, Andrew Peart, Rudolph Speid and Xavier Gilbert among others. They met all the requirements,” Ricketts added.

He went on to say that the former footballers' association also met the requirements and were approved but the Beach Football Association did not because of “serious misrepresentation” as Ricketts put it.

 “The directors for the Beach Football Association were not named, the members were. The directors are those that are listed at the Company’s Office. There were members who were asked to serve. There is a huge debate right now because of one particular gentleman. A member of KSAFA got up in the congress yesterday and said that gentleman has vehemently denied ever being a part of the directorship,” Ricketts explained.

“However, the gentleman sent an email to the JFF this morning (Monday) saying that he is, in fact, a member. So, as it is now, there was serious misrepresentation because the gentleman sent an email saying he is, in fact, a member of the board of directors for beach football. What has happened is because that was raised, I suggested that we defer sanctioning the Beach Football Association until we get clarification so the other two-the coaches association and the past players association-were accepted,” he added.

The remaining stakeholders who have not applied will have until some time in December to try and meet the requirements.

“There are others who we would’ve reached out to and have asked them to apply. So, there are now applications from ISSA, PFJL among others. The referees have some further documents to be submitted. In an effort to ensure that we get all the stakeholders on board, we have extended the period to sometime in December so that those entities who have not met the requirements have a chance to get themselves up in line with the requirements and to apply so we will again have to have another congress maybe just before the voting congress,” he said.

In conclusion, Ricketts lamented the publicizing of the ongoing situation and accused detractors of trying everything to discredit the current JFF Board of Directors.

 “We are publicizing the whole thing and, believe me, we’re making so many issues, making mountains out of molehills, all in the interest of politics," the JFF president said.

"It is just sad how people will do everything to discredit this board. We are not perfect and we make mistakes but, my God man, don’t just try and destroy something you are a part of. We try to be strong and try to be guided by the articles of the constitution and we’re just hoping that after the election, things will be normal and that we just move forward in an effort to grow the sport of football which ought to be our aim and ambition."

Bradley Jacks

Bradley Jacks is a budding journalist and an avid sports fan. His love of research and sports has led him to SportsMax.tv, a place where those passions work hand in hand to allow him to produce content.

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