Trinidad and Tobago's Football Association (TTFA) recently took a step closer to a return to self-governance when members voted unanimously in favour of revising statutes to its constitution, as stipulated by FIFA.

The revision took place during an extraordinary general meeting (EGM) hosted by TTFA at the Home of Football in Couva.

Revision of the existing constitution was mandated by FIFA in order to effectively dissolve the TTFA’s normalisation committee, which was installed in March 2020 to replace the elected executive, led by William Wallace.

With this latest development, the highly anticipated election to install a new TTFA executive will take place before March 31, when the normalisation committee’s tenure ends.

All 30 eligible members voted in favour of the changes at the meeting, where FIFA and Concacaf officials observed. The recent EGM was arranged after FIFA declared that the proposed TTFA statutes “(fully comply) with the requirements and standards of FIFA and Concacaf,” and are therefore endorsed by both.

The elected administration was controversially taken over by FIFA after the world governing body said it observed “grave violations of FIFA statutes,” and other problems within the TTFA, such as debts, which put it at risk of insolvency.

As such, the normalisation committee was installed by FIFA primarily to run day-to-day business; settle debts; make recommendations for constitutional amendments to align with FIFA statutes; and to call the TTFA elections, of which it would oversee.

TTFA general secretary Amiel Mohammed said a copy of the new statutes “will probably be published on (TTFA’s) website this week.”

“There are many provisions (to assist) in ensuring there is accountability and prudent financial governance as per policies, controls and signing authority,” Mohammed told T&T Newsday.

The voting structure has been amended and slate elections have been introduced. The executive committee will consist of nine members.

T&T Premier Football League Tier One clubs (maximum of 12) have a delegate and two votes each, along with the top six clubs from the second tier at the end of the most recent campaign.

Each of the regional associations and T&T Women’s League Football also have two votes and a delegate, while the remaining associations: beach soccer, futsal, referees, coaches, Secondary Schools Football League, Primary Schools Football League and the Veterans Football Foundation of T&T, all have one vote and delegate.

Trinidad and Tobago’s senior men’s Head coach Angus Eve pulled no punches, as he opened up about the lack of support received during his tenure.

Eve’s revelation came during a recent interview on the I95 sports radio programme, where he also disclosed that he was without a contract and was yet to have discussions with the Normalisation Committee (NC) regarding an extension, at that point.

“They (NC) are a little bit finicky to do something about it (the contract) because, the football fraternity, I don’t know if they want me to sign a new contract. I have not heard from any of them since I have been doing this job,” Eve said, referring to the lukewarm response from the TTFA Zones.

The tactician, who led the Soca Warriors to a fairly successful Concacaf Nations League campaign, where they got to the quarterfinal and registered an historic win over United States but lost the two-leg tie on aggregate. Still, they have a second shot at Copa America qualification via a playoff fixture against Canada scheduled for March 23.

“But they are a little bit hesitant to do anything because they are studying what the members will think. So, the members have not really shown me any support. Except the president of the South Zone Dennis Latiff and Ross Russell (North Zone president) who is my friend, no other president has reached out to me or spoken to us,” Eve disclosed.

Eve believes it would be prudent if he signed a contract before the Canada game, having achieved objectives, which also included Gold Cup qualification.

“We have never been in this place before. We have never reached out of the group stage and into the knockout stage and try to reach in the quarterfinals and semi-finals of the Nations League before. So, I think we have achieved all of our targets, all of our objectives that have been placed in front of us,” he said.

 “Win, lose or draw. I could possibly not be the coach (after March). Through the whole tenure it has been like that. I think there is a distinct lack of support. A lot of the things you read on social media is like if people don’t want me in the job, so I tend to want to focus on the guys,” Eve noted.

The outspoken coach also alluded to the challenges faced with getting the twin island republic back to this point of competitiveness.

“It has been a re-building process, and it has gone pretty much better than we expected. Nobody expected us the way we got into the A, nobody felt that we belonged, and we were under pressure from the first match,” Eve shared.

“Also, there was some other stuff happening behind the scenes with some of the older players and it probably took a little of the focus away from the homing in on the games. We were fighting against a lot of stuff, and I think that the staff and the Normalisation Committee pulled together, the people who support us.

“We insulated ourselves and I think you saw the fruit of that re-building where we won three of the four games and that was fantastic,” he ended.

The Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) has extended the time the Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA) will be run by a Normalisation Committee, which will now hold the reins of power for another year.

The Committee was put in charge of the day-to-day affairs of the country’s football in 2020 after FIFA claimed it had concerns over the organisation's ability to repay its debt.  The move was initially contested at the nation’s High Court by the then William Wallace-run administration, which briefly led to T&T suspension from world football.  The body was, however, later re-admitted after dropping the court case.

The interim body was initially scheduled to hand power back to the TTFA in March of next year, but the period will now be extended to March 2023.  The decision, which was made by The Bureau of the Council, was communicated by FIFA secretary general Fatma Samoura via a letter.  The Normalisation Committee, headed by Robert Hadad, was tasked with establishing ‘a debt repayment plan that is implementable by the TTFA administration, to review and amend the TTFA Statutes (and other regulations where necessary), and ensure their compliance with the Fifa Statutes and requirements before duly submitting them for approval to the TTFA Congress, and to organise and conduct elections of a new TTFA Executive Committee for a four-year mandate.’  The Committee it appears will not complete the task list in time.

According to the document, however, The Bureau of the Council took note of delays that impacted the Normalisation’s Committees ability to complete its duties.  One issue mentioned was the lawsuit brought before the courts by the former TTFA board and also the impact of the global pandemic, which has hampered its ability to freely go about its tasks.  In addition, The Bureau also pointed to certain other issues ‘that led to the backlog in the normal operations of the TTFA, including finance.’

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