PFF’s suspension takes govt by surprise [APP/The News]

PFF’s suspension takes govt by surprise [APP/The News]

by Abdul Mohi Shah

ISLAMABAD: The suspension of the Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) Wednesday took the government by surprise as newly-appointed director general of the Pakistan Sports Board (PSB) Col (r) Asif Zaman said that the FIFA Council took the decision in a haste.

The Bureau of the FIFA Council suspended the PFF on what it called ‘due to third-party interference, which constitutes a serious violation of the FIFA Statutes.’

The PSB director general while talking to ‘The News’ said that Minister for Inter-Provincial Coordination (IPC) Dr Fehmida Mirza had requested for patience during her press conference held a couple of days back.

“We were not expecting such a hasty decision from the football’s governing body. It has surprised rather shocked us as the game of football will be the ultimate sufferer after such decision. The minister had assured her help for resolving the issue in the best interest of the game. Though the government does not want any interference, for the sake of the game’s future we wanted an amicable settlement of the issue,” he said.

Asif Zaman said he was expecting a detailed and thorough review of the prevailing situation by the FIFA. “We were taken by surprise by this hasty decision that I feel would serve no good to the future of the game. We were expecting a rational review of the situation by the game’s governing body before imposing a suspension on the PFF.”

The FIFA in a handout issued Wednesday said the decision to suspend Pakistan was prompted by the recent takeover of the PFF’s Headquarters in Lahore by a group of protesters and an alleged decision by certain individuals to remove the FIFA-appointed Normalisation Committee of the PFF led by Haroon Malik and to hand over the leadership of the PFF to Syed Ashfaq Hussain Shah.

When PFF president Ashfaq Shah was approached in Islamabad where he was nursing his minor surgery, he said he was disappointed by the decision like any other Pakistani.

Published in The News, 8 April 2021

APP adds:

PFF’s suspension by FIFA highly painful , IPC minister

ISLAMABAD, Apr 07 (APP):Federal Minister of Inter Provincial Coordination (IPC) Dr Fehmida Mirza said on Wednesday that the suspension of Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) by the FIFA Council was highly painful, and absolutely shocking to the millions of football fans.

While reacting on the instant FIFA decision, the minister, who is also President of Pakistan Sports Board (PSB) in a statement said that the decision taken hurriedly by the FIFA Council was uncalled for as the Government of Pakistan had already condemned the act of taking over of Football House by a faction of PFF in unequivocal terms.

She said efforts were being made to bring both parties at the table. She said that the Normaliation Committee was also being requested to announce the roadmap for elections of PFF in line with the directions of FIFA.

She observed that the FIFA decision had saddened the football fraternity of Pakistan.

The minister reiterated that PFF and Normalisation Committee were autonomous bodies and the government was playing the role of mediator so as to restore the normal activities of football in the country.

She once again requested all the factions of PFF to give up their unjustified present stance and amicably resolve their disputes through dialogue.

Fehmida also appealed FIFA authorities to waive off the present suspension of PFF for the sake of football fans in Pakistan.

The Government of Pakistan pledges to facilitate the FIFA in the peaceful resolution of the matter while upholding the international obligations, she added.