Tikko urges govt to hand over PFF headquarters to NC [The News]

Tikko urges govt to hand over PFF headquarters to NC [The News]

KARACHI: A senior official of the Balochistan Football Association (BFA) Haji Saeed Tikko on Wednesday demanded that the federal government hand over the PFF headquarters to FIFA-appointed Normalisation Committee (NC) as soon as possible so that the long-standing dispute could be resolved.

“We demand that the federal government ensure smooth handover of the headquarters to NC so that the electoral process could begin,” Tikko told ‘The News’ in an interview from his hometown Chaman.

However, he conceded it is not so easy to resolve this issue. “If the government does this, we the stakeholders will be in a position to put pressure on NC’s chairman Haroon Malik to hold the PFF elections as soon as possible.

“People hope for an easy resolution of the dispute but I don’t think so. I think the government wants a role in the election process which is not possible as FIFA does not allow interference of a third party in the affairs of its affiliated associations,” said Tikko, a former BFA secretary.

He said the football fraternity has been divided and WhatsApp groups are their main cause. “We listen to people associated with football using foul language against one another in these whatsapp groups. Some have become spokesmen of Haroon Malik while Haroon does not know about that. It’s the cause of discord in the football community,” Tikko pointed out.

“We don’t realise what is happening in our tournaments. Referees are being mishandled and Pakistan is being defamed because everyone knows that there is no system of punishment and reward. Nobody thinks about this. Our football stakeholders are responsible for this mess. But now the big responsibility rests on the shoulders of the government. It should play its due role and immediately hand over the headquarters to NC unconditionally,” Tikko said.

“We don’t feel for our young footballers who are the future of the game but we only consider our benefits and FIFA protocols. I cannot favour any party. If I do this then who will fight for our players who are suffering the most because of this matter,” Tikko said.

It is likely that the government will hand over the PFF headquarters to NC any time soon. The IPC minister Dr Fehmida is abroad and it is expected that the handing over process will be undertaken when she returns.

Pakistan is serving FIFA suspension because of the third party’s interference. FIFA will lift suspension only when the headquarters and the accounts are under the control of NC. FIFA has already advised NC that after regaining access to headquarters and accounts it will have to start club registration and scrutiny which is the first step towards holding the elections at the district level. After that, provincial and PFF level elections will be conducted. FIFA has already extended the NC’s mandate until June 30, 2022.

Published in The News, 13 January 2022