Anderson’s RSA team provides evidence of “massive electoral fraud” by current JFF administration ahead of January 14 elections

By Sports Desk December 04, 2023
JFF Presidential candidate Raymond Anderson. JFF Presidential candidate Raymond Anderson.

The Real Solid Action campaign team, led by Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) Presidential candidate, Raymond Anderson, has provided evidence of what they describe as “massive electoral fraud” by the incumbent JFF administration led by President Michael Ricketts.

Last week, Anderson’s team expressed profound outrage and dismay at the recent uncovering of actions taken by the Michael Ricketts-led administration to disenfranchise constitutionally recognized voter organizations. 

Anderson's team said it has in its possession irrefutable evidence showing the JFF's repeated attempts to prevent legitimate voter organizations from exercising their right to vote in the upcoming presidential election, scheduled for January 14.

These tactics, the RSA team believes are a blatant disregard for democratic principles and are aimed at silencing voices that are crucial to the fair and transparent functioning of the electoral process.

They presented said evidence to members of the media and, thus, to the public during a press briefing at the Liguanea Club in Kingston on Monday. 

To better understand the questions at hand, we must first gain a better understanding of exactly how the voting structure for the JFF elections is made up. 

“There are 56 votes spread across what we refer to as three pillars,” according to RSA team member and current JFF director Denzil Wilks. 

“Pillar one comprises all the football parish associations and each parish has two votes so that’s 26 votes there.” 

“Pillar two comprises the top four clubs in the Men’s Premier League, the top four clubs in the Women’s Premier League, the top four clubs in what is referred to as the men’s tier two and equally in the women’s tier two. We are aware that in the current circumstances, because there has not been any tier two in the women’s area, there is a special arrangement as far as voting is concerned where the top four in tier one will vote on behalf of what should be tier two.” 

“Pillar three comprises the Referees Association, Jamaica Football Coaches Association, ISSA, Inter-col, Beach Soccer Jamaica, Past Players Association and the PFJL.” 

With that said, RSA’s major concerns have to do with the disenfranchising of two of these members-the Jamaica Football Coaches Association headed by Vin Blaine and Beach Soccer Jamaica headed by Pat Garel. 

The RSA argues that the current JFF administration masterminded the formation of two shell companies, namely the Jamaica Coaches Association led by Rudolph Speid, and the Beach Football Association of Jamaica Limited which listed current JFF vice president Bruce Gaynor, team manager for the Senior Reggae Boyz O-mar Stennett and current JFF director Patrick Malcolm as directors. 

These companies were formed to supplement votes for the current administration at the January 14 elections. Both companies were granted admission to the JFF.

The evidence provided against the Jamaica Coaches Association was a letter from the Companies Office of Jamaica stating “the name Jamaica Coaches Association Limited does not appear on our list of registered companies.” 

“When we looked at the coaches and we sat and planned, the only group we had in mind was the Vin Blaine-led group that was formed in 2009. There was no other group,” Anderson, who also the current vice president of the JFF, said. 

The board was essentially tricked into thinking that the Speid-led Jamaica Coaches Association Limited was a registered company as Anderson explained further. 

“When we as a board made that decision, the General Secretary Dennis Chung told us that all the boxes by the Speid-led association were checked and that the association led by Blaine had some outstanding boxes. If you look at it, the boxes that were not ticked for the Blaine-led group did not apply to coaches. It was an inside job. They went ahead and tried to register the company and it could not be registered so they just ticked that box and brought it to the board. Based on that, the board referred it to congress with all those boxes ticked. So, the decision congress made on the coaches’ association is not true. It is a lie!” 

A similar situation took place regarding Beach Soccer Jamaica and Beach Football Jamaica Limited.

Beach Soccer Jamaica, run by Pat Garel, is the internationally recognized body controlling the sport in the country by the global governing body, Beach Soccer Worldwide, whereas Beach Football Association of Jamaica Limited is not internationally recognized.

The latter was, however, chosen by the JFF to cast a vote at the upcoming election instead of the actual body overseeing the sport in Jamaica.

“On September 15th, we (Beach Soccer Jamaica) were invited to what would be a congress on the 24th of September to ratify the affiliates based on the mandates of the new constitution. Prior to that time, when we were having any kind of Beach Soccer event, all that was necessary was to send a letter to the JFF and ask them for a sanction letter,” Garel said.

“The congress took place and we were told that we need to be compliant in being a registered company which we did on September 18, then we sent in our membership application on the 19th of September as instructed by the JFF so we thought that we would have gotten an acknowledgment letter which would have been the proper process,” she added.

Garel said that they followed up regarding their application on September 22 with JFF General Secretary Dennis Chung and even thought that they couldn’t go to the congress on the 24th without it being ratified.

“The congress took place and they said don’t worry about it. We need more supporting documents-a short profile of your directors- and we duly obliged and sent those. We kept calling and we kept writing then he (Chung) sent to say that they are giving some of the pillar three people, who are not as compliant as we have been, time to get their documents in,” she said.

According to Garel, they wrote again on October 30th and the message from the General Secretary was the same as before.

“On November 7, we heard through the media that there was consideration for another Beach entity and so we enquired and we were told that on October 18, a Beach Football Association of Jamaica Limited was registered,” she said.

“We got back in touch with Mr. Chung and he said they’re not understanding what’s going on. He told us to just send any other additional information we have regarding our qualification and I said ‘what else would that be?’ He said anything from the international body so we got a letter from the international body inviting both the JFF and Beach Soccer Jamaica to the World Cup in Dubai next February so we sent that letter only to understand, through the media again, that they decided on Beach Football Association of Jamaica Limited,” Garel added.

In fact, one of the listed directors of Beach Football Jamaica Limited, O-mar Stennett, denied any involvement with the company, stating that the furthest his involvement with the sport goes is being added to a WhatsApp group titled Beach Football Jamaica.

The other listed directors of the company- Bruce Gaynor and Patrick Malcolm- wouldn’t even be able to vote at the elections due to the JFF’s constitution. There was even evidence of Stennett's signature being forged on an official document signed by Gaynor.

To conclude, the RSA is appealing to the JFF’s electoral committee, including JOA President Christopher Samuda, Leighton McKnight, Acting Principal of Jamaica College Wayne Robinson and Steve Distant, will overturn the JFF’s decision and grant voting privileges to the legitimate, constitutionally recognized pillar three members, Jamaica Football Coaches Association and Beach Soccer Jamaica.

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