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Global Sep 25, 2020

FIFA suspends Trinidad and Tobago Football Association for ‘grave violations’

FIFA has suspended the Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA) from international football, effective immediately.

This comes in the wake of a three-month tenure for former TTFA President William Wallace, during which time TTFA staff were paid just once, and the association had its bank accounts frozen by a domestic court due to unpaid debt.

The suspension was handed down after repeated attempts by FIFA to procure higher levels of financial transparency from TTFA.

See the full announcement below:

“The Bureau of the FIFA Council has suspended the Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA) with immediate effect, due to grave violations of the FIFA Statutes.

The suspension was prompted by the former leadership of the TTFA lodging a claim before a local court in Trinidad and Tobago in order to contest the decision of the FIFA Council to appoint a normalization committee for the TTFA. This course of action was in direct breach of article 59 of the FIFA Statutes, which expressly prohibits recourse to ordinary courts unless specifically provided for in the FIFA regulations.

A normalisation committee was installed by the FIFA Council after it was established that the former leadership of the TTFA had engaged in various acts of serious mismanagement. The decision of the former leadership to go to a local court to contest the appointment of the normalisation committee jeopardizes not only the future of football in Trinidad and Tobago, but also endangers the overall global football governance structure, which relies on the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) as the exclusive forum for resolving disputes of this nature.

The relevant parties were initially given until September 16 to withdraw the case but failed to do so. This deadline was then extended until September 23, which was not respected either.

In the circumstances, the Bureau of the FIFA Council has decided to suspend the TTFA.

This suspension will only be lifted when the TTFA fully complies with its obligations as a member of FIFA, including recognising the legitimacy of the appointed normalisation committee and bringing its own statutes into line with the FIFA Statutes.”

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