Sports — 28 February 2014

FFB appoints Caretaker Committee to administer PLB Closing Season; still Belikin Cup Tournament, opens March 8

It has been an eventful few days in the football world, but it looks like, where there were dark clouds looming with the postponement of the PLB Closing Season, there now appears a silver lining, with the announcement today that the season kicks off next weekend, and it still has the sponsorship of Belikin.

League President “hands over PLB to FFB”

As we reported in our mid-week issue page 21 article, “PLB Closing Season delayed; owners ‘rocking the boat’ on Executive,” a meeting of PLB owners had made some stern requests on the PLB Executive, along with a decision to postpone the start of the new Closing Season. In response to the letter on February 20 from the owners, PLB President Jaime “Myito” Perdomo penned his response on Tuesday, February 25, where he expressed his “disappointment with the meeting and the contents of the letter,” and declared that the “decision has been reach to turn over the administration of the PLB to the Football Federation of Belize effective today February 25, 2014 base on article 41- 2 of the PLB Statutes. (FFB shall have jurisdiction on internal national dispute i.e. dispute between parties belonging to FFB and PLB).”

There had been reports of conflicts within the Executive of the PLB during the course of the recently completed Opening Season, and suspicions that not all Executive members were in support of the President’s letter were confirmed by an email today naming three members who were reportedly “never in any meeting to discuss that matter” and “were never a part of a decision made by the President of the PLB to hand over the League administration to the FFB.”

FFB responds to the crisis

Be that as it may, with the interest of football at heart, the FFB has stepped into the void, and matters were agreed upon at a meeting this morning involving PLB team owners and members of the FFB Executive. Below is the FFB press release on that meeting:

“February 27, 2014

“The League team owners had a very productive meeting with President of the Football Federation of Belize this morning, at the FFB HQ in Belmopan.

“Present at the meeting were: Belmopan Bandits – Minister John Saldivar and Mr. Kenneth Budna; Verdes F.C. – Mr. Ian Haylock; Police United – Mr. Andres Makin, Sr.; San Ignacio United – Mr. Johnny Medina, Sr. and Mr. Johnny Medina, Jr.; Belize Defence Force – Mr. Lionel Cuthkelvin and Mr. Victor Briceno; F.C. Belize – Mr. Ian Jones; FFB General Secretary – Mr. Michael Blease; Executive Member of the FFB – Mr. Sergio Chuc.

“The following was agreed on:

“The tournament will remain as Belikin Cup Tournament 2013/2014.

“Tournament starting date is set for March 8, and will end before May 18. There are only eleven (11) weeks for the tournament.

“All parties have agreed to play mid-week games, due to time constraint.

“A cash prize will be sought.

“A caretaker committee has been put in place to administrate this second tournament of the 2013/2014 season.

“The members of the committee are: Mr. Ian Jones – representing team owners, Mr. Nolbert Moss, Mr. Michael Blease and Mr. Sergio Chuc.

“The Federation is very happy with the outcome of this meeting and the solution found to the challenge of the League.

“The Federation promises to invite FIFA to assist with the restructuring of the League before the start of the next season scheduled for the month of August 2014.

“The decision on the future of the League Executive will be arrived at, at the next Ordinary Congress for the League, with advice from CONCACAF.

“The Federation assures the football public that all effort will be taken to ensure that football at the highest level in this country will be played in an organized, disciplined and secure environment.

“The Federation thanks all football fans for their continued support to our sport of football.”

(Ed. Note: Paradise/Freedom Fighters owner Patrick Flores informed us today that his club was unable to be represented at the meeting today due to the very short notice, having been contacted only yesterday evening; but his club is ready to play next week. Also, we were informed that Belikin has not committed to repeat the big tournament cash prize, but the weekly contributions to the clubs will continue.)

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