Sports — 13 May 2011
The Belize football “internal problem”, as FIFA President Sepp Blatter referred to it on his visit last month, has reached crisis proportions this week, as BPFL Commissioner Sergio Chuc confirmed via email to FFB 2nd Vice-President David H. Jones today, and copied to our newspaper, that “we are not interested in continuing to be part of the FFB.”
Chuc’s declaration to the FFB followed a stern letter yesterday from the FFB Vice-President regarding the BPFL semifinal matches that had been cancelled by the BPFL and its decision to go right into its championship finals on Sunday last. FFB had refused to allow the championship game between BDF and F.C. Belize to be played on its field; while the BPFL, because of its FFB affiliation, had been denied the use of other Sports Council fields. (The FFB is not officially registered as a member of the National Sports Council.) BPFL member and F.C. Belize owner Lionel Welch had remarked in his call last Friday morning on Krem’s WUB morning show, that the FFB was communicating in a disrespectful tone to the BPFL. Welch said he could not tolerate the FFB “talking to us like if we are children”, or words to that effect. In Jones’ email yesterday to Chuc, he declared that “The Football Federation of Belize will ensure that the current BPFL Tournament come to its proper closure,” which undoubtedly further raised the ire of the BPFL officials, who consider themselves an autonomous league.
The BPFL, under then chairman Omario “Maito” Perdomo, had withdrawn from the FFB back in 2002, but returned to the FFB fold after about three years, under a “provisional status”. What makes the present withdrawal more noteworthy, is that it comes only a few weeks after FIFA President Sepp Blatter was advised of football problems in Belize by Prime Minister Dean Barrow, and at present the Ministry of Sports Investigation Commission report on the FFB elections is due anytime now.
The present status of football in Belize, then, is that at its highest level, the only two semi-pro leagues in the country, both the BPFL and the Super League of Belize, are NOT affiliated to the FFB. This is quite unacceptable under FIFA. It is an “internal problem” alright, but a mighty big one indeed. The best solution, it seems, is for “free and fair elections” of a new national football Executive that would have the support of all leagues, organizations and football associations in Belize.
See the text of the email exchange below:
Re: Confirmation of departure
— On Thu, 5/12/11, Sergio Chuc <[email protected]> wrote:Dear Mr. Jones: The BPFL is a registered independent league with its own executive and offices. The FFB cannot ensure that the current BPFL tournament is completed, as you all have no jurisdiction over BPFL. You have not even bothered to approve our statutes that would give you such a power. But for the record, we are not interested in continuing to be part of the FFB. We have found over the years that the President is very deceptive, arrogant and lacks the best interest of the game. You are no better than him as you blindly follow his instructions and cannot make decisions on your own. Furthermore, the majority of district chairmen are lackeys that do the bidding of the president for a few pieces of silver, especially the chairman for Orange Walk. Mr. Palacio is by far the most dishonest person I have come to meet in the last years. I pray that you all would find it in your hearts to step down and give football a chance in Belize.
On Wed, 5/11/11, David Jones <[email protected]> wrote:Dear Messrs. Welch and Chuc: The Football Federation of Belize (FFB) appreciates your response in writing as to whether your Clubs will continue to participate in the current BPFL Tournament. The FFB expects your response by MIDDAY Thursday, May 12, 2011. A negative and/or no response will mean to us that there is no interest or desire on the part of your Clubs to continue in the tournament. The Football Federation of Belize will ensure that the current BPFL Tournament comes to its proper closure.
David H. Jones
Always wear a Smile
(Ed. Note: Mr. Chuc’s words are important, because to some people they are like “fish from river bottom.” Sergio is a very easy going person, and viewed by some as too tolerant over the years of Dr. Chimilio’s high handed behavior. He followed Dr. Chimilio back in 2008 in taking his then BPFL champion team Hankook Verdes to play its CONCACAF “home” game in Guatemala against Mexico’s Cruz Azul. Sergio was therefore viewed as a Chimilio sympathizer, but raised some eyebrows when he attempted to challenge Chimilio in the last FFB “endorsement/elections” in December, 2010.)