Fair Play: A chance to save RP football

UNLESS Mari Martinez grows a conscience (and we’d discover life in Mars), it looks like we’re going to have him as the Philippine Football Federation (PFF) president for the rest of his term.

In a recent BOG meeting attended by 10 members, there was a proposal to oust Martinez, who is no longer trusted that he’s been removed as a signatory of PFF funds.

The presidents of the Football Associations (FAs) of Iloilo, Dumaguete, Cebu, Naga and North Cotabato voted to have the proposal to oust Martinez submitted to the PFF Congress in three weeks’ time.

The presidents of the FAs of Baguio, Camarines Norte, Tagum, Tarlac and Pagadian, said, “No.”

Since it was a tie, guess who had the authority to break it?

Martinez, of course.

The same guy who, in their previous meeting, said he transferred the PFF funds from its account to another person’s for safekeeping. It’s like leaving your laptop and cell phone unattended, outside, for safekeeping.

Naturally, that safekeeping measure didn’t work and based on an audit report, P3.7 million and $44,373 of those funds are unaccounted for.

It isn’t surprising that Martinez got the support of the five Board of Governors (BOGs) (I’d like to know if these five even have a football tournament in their FAs), when the previous president faced similar moves, he released P20,000 to all FA presidents, supposedly for communication assistance.

Did Martinez pay for their support?

I don’t know. But I know this. When Richard Montayre, the CebuFA president, was pestering Martinez for the AFC Vision Asia Funds, the president reportedly told him that he’ll just deposit P4,000 a month to his ATM account.

Montayre left with no money and has since spearheaded the move to oust Martinez because of his questionable handling of PFF funds.

How questionable?

You tell me.

The audit report mentioned a payment for the RP team’s tickets to Taiwan for a series of friendlies for P302,680. The audit team found out that team manager Dan Palami paid for those tickets and turned over the receipt to the PFF for reimbursement.
He didn’t get a cent.

Is Martinez misusing PFF funds?

You tell me.

Last I heard, the PFF has P40 million a year.

When was the last time we had a national tournament?

I’ve heard the PFF is going to suspend the CFA in retaliation for what Montayre has done.

I hope Martinez does. Let this be a full-blown fight and I’ll gladly side with the CFA on this one.

Some Cebu referees, because of their disagreement with the CFA on some policies, have chosen to side with Martinez on this one.

I hope the referees won’t suffer the fate of their predecessors when they got involved with Martinez.

Memories, it seems, are short and the enemy of your enemy becomes your friend.

The last time Cebu refs got involved with Martinez, in the Laguna Cup in 2001, they came to me asking for help because they never got paid.

That is Martinez, the PFF president who can no longer be trusted that he’s been removed as signatory of the account of the very organization he heads.

The same guy, who, because of the support of those 5 BOG members, and folks like some of our local referees, will still be president until 2011.

Most of the folks here love to say they are doing what they are doing for the love of football.

Well, we had a chance to save RP football. What did you do?



manfred said…
Ok, for the rest of his term is just a year, what is following, what program, who will stand for what?
Who will be the next president and will he be able to finish his term?
Everybody should do his job on his place, it may be very good if CFA can unite again, clubs, teams, referees, players, officials.
If all have the same target to improve the football and make it more popular and accessible for everybody (one of the main goals of FIFA) it should be possible to have a better football future.

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