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PFF Plan to Infuse Young Blood Raises Eyebrows

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Alam Zeb Safi

The News

KARACHI: Several provincial football associations are unhappy with an initiative of the Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) to press its affiliated units to replace their existing secretaries with young and energetic officials.

The PFF in its Congress and Executive Committee meetings held last year had advised all the federating units to replace their ageing secretaries with those who are young and energetic in order to bring an improvement in their working. But the advice from the supreme body has raised many eyebrows within the provincial associations.

“We don’t know why the PFF wants to replace their secretaries who are experienced and are doing a good job,” an official of one of the provincial associations told ‘The News’. “Moreover, in the minutes of the PFF general council and the executive committee meetings, no age limit for the secretary was mentioned and only the words young and energetic have been mentioned which are confusing,” the official said.

“The PFF had advised in those meetings that the task of replacing secretaries should be completed by December31, 2011. But still we are confused what to do. Constitutionally, the PFF has no right to dictate to the provincial associations and these bodies have every right to make their own decisions,” the official said.

“On the one hand, the PFF wants to install young and energetic secretaries in the federating units in order to improve their performance while on the other hand the supreme body is being run by the retired and overage Army and PAF officials. If really they want to bring change, then along with replacing the secretaries of the provincial associations, the PFF should also fire their already retired officials who are drawing hefty salaries,” an official of another provincial association pointed out.

“In a democratic set-up, it becomes very difficult to implement such things that are forced. And if we are further pressed then it could also create differences between the PFF and our association,” he said.

Under the rules, the name of the secretary is recommended to the PFF by the chairman of the provincial body with the formal approval of the executive committee.

Sources said that the PFF is interested in the appointment of a few AID-27 coaches in order to accommodate them because they would not be able to get their routine salaries during the current year because the federation has disbanded the programme temporarily.

Jan Muhammad Baloch (Sindh FA), Haji Mohammad Ilyas (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa FA), Jan Muhammad Marri (Balochistan FA) and Agha Latif (Punjab FA) have been serving as secretaries of their respective provincial associations since July 2011 and have been receiving salaries of Rs25,000 per month from the PFF.

AID-27 coaches Nasir Ismail and Hassan Baloch are in run for the secretary slot of Sindh Football Association but according to sources Hasan has emerged as the weighty candidate because he is supported by a strong pressure group within the association. Gohar Zaman is the PFF choice for the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, but it is yet to be seen who is being recommended by the said province. Balochistan FC is yet to decide about the issue.

“We have not worked over it. We will hold a meeting to decide about our new secretary and if objections come against the move then the PFF will also be intimated about it,” an official of the Balochistan Football Association told this correspondent.

Sources said that Punjab Football Association has also not given any reply to the PFF and plans to hold a meeting to resolve the matter. A PFF official told ‘The News’ the other day that by installing the young and energetic secretaries, the provincial associations would be able to improve their functioning and will generate funds by themselves to hold Inter-District and other tournaments.