Pakistan Football Getting Banned By FIFA, Ashfaq Group Refuses to Back Down and FIFA warns of suspending PFF

Pakistan Football Banned By FIFA, Ashfaq Group Refuses to Back Down and FIFA warns of suspending PFF

ISLAMABAD: Shahid Khokar stood outside the Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) headquarters in Lahore on Wednesday awaiting a verdict. He waited and waited until the 8 pm deadline passed.

According to the Dawn newspaper, Shahid Khokhar was the only member of the PFF normalization committee appointed by FIFA who was present and was waiting to inform the chairman of the committee Haroon Malik whether the group of officials headed by Ashfaq Hussain Shah Is it going to vacate the headquarters of the governing body of football, which they seized by force on Saturday?

Ashfaq Group refused to leave the headquarters and Shahid Khokhar left, now Pakistan football is waiting for when FIFA will announce the sanctions.

FIFA on Tuesday issued a stern warning to the Ashfaq Group that Pakistan could face suspension for the second time in four years if it failed to hand over the PFF headquarters to the normalization committee by 8pm on Wednesday. Is.

However, the warning was ignored and a video was distributed just half an hour after the deadline, telling Ashfaq that the headquarters would not be handed over and that he would instead negotiate with FIFA.

“After numerous consultations and meetings with members of my Congress and executive committee, we have decided that we will continue to work from the PFF headquarters,” said Ashfaq, who presided over the PFF elections in December 2018 under the chairmanship of the Supreme Court. Will keep

It should be noted that these 2018 elections were not recognized by FIFA.

“When FIFA appointed the normalization committee 18 months ago, we handed over the administrative charge of the PFF headquarters to it and we hoped that they would conduct transparent and fair elections for the PFF,” he said. We will put football on the right track, but not a single step has been taken so far.

“They made fun of our decision to hand over the office. Now we are in a position where the normalization committee has been changed three times but there is no election roadmap yet,” Ashfaq added.

FIFA appointed the PFF’s normalization committee in September 2019. Nearly four years after the disputed PFF election, Pakistan faced football problems, with the then-president Faisal Saleh Hayat replaced by a court. FIFA suspended the Pakistan Football Federation for six months from October 2017 to March 2018 for handing over the management of PFF headquarters to the appointed administrator.

After the appointment of the PFF normalization committee, it was handed over to Hamza Khan, but he resigned from his post in December last year, after which Munir Sadhana was appointed acting chairman. In January, Haroon Malik was named chairman of the PFF’s normalization committee, as FIFA replaced all members of the initial committee.

As in-charge, Munir Sadhana had annulled all the decisions of Hamza, ie Haroon and his committee had to start work from the beginning. After being given the mandate till June 30 this year, Haroon earlier this month announced that he would give the election roadmap by April.

It seems that these same reasons compelled the Ashfaq Group to withdraw its administrative charge of the PFF headquarters and hinted that the election would not be held under FIFA’s mandate.

Aaron called Wednesday’s events “unfortunate.”

He told Dawn that this is indeed a sad day for Pakistan football, it is very unfortunate that the Ashfaq Group has nothing to do with the future of the country’s footballers.

The suspension of FIFA could deprive Pakistan of participation in international competitions as FIFA recognizes only one federation which is recognized by the world governing body of football.

However, it does not seem to matter that Ashfaq was not recognized by FIFA, he said in the video, “We came to power through elections held by the Supreme Court and we are the legitimate stakeholders of football in the country.” ۔

Wednesday’s events have added to the long-running crisis, where Pakistan has been plagued by football problems since the 2015 election dispute of Faisal Saleh Hayat, who has been PFF president since 2003.

After these elections, the PFF was divided into two factions, one headed by Hayat and the other headed by Senior Vice President Zahir Ali Shah, and two years later when the Lahore High Court ruled in favor of the PFF. FIFA had banned Pakistan when it had appointed an administrator.

Although Faisal Saleh Hayat was reinstated as president, the Supreme Court had ordered fresh elections to the PFF after the election of the Punjab Football Association (PFA), which split the PFF. Caused the fall.

After the victory of his candidate Sardar Naveed Haider Khan in the Punjab Football Association elections conducted by the Supreme Court, Faisal Saleh Hayat had no problem with this result but a fresh drama was about to take place in the PFF elections.

Prior to the election, Sardar Naveed had left Faisal Saleh Hayat and joined hands with Zahir Ali Shah, as a result of which Ashfaq was elected as the head of PFF. Denying it, he called it interference in the affairs of the PFF.

As a result, FIFA appointed a normalization committee, after which Ashfaq and Zahir parted ways, meaning that three groups were trying to take over the PFF.

Zahir on Wednesday appealed to Prime Minister Imran Khan to intervene and save the situation, telling Dawn that the prime minister, as a former player, was in talks with FIFA to resolve the issue. can.

Aamir Dogar is an adviser to the Prime Minister, but the government has refused to play any role in the Ashfaq Group’s takeover of the PFF headquarters.

Talking to reporters in Islamabad during a press conference four hours before the 8 pm deadline, Federal Minister for Inter-Provincial Coordination Dr Fehmida Mirza said, “We do not accept what happened in Lahore.”

Fehmida Mirza called on FIFA to hold new talks with football officials in Pakistan and claimed that the federation would not be suspended.

“We have written to FIFA to send its fact-finding committee to Pakistan, although FIFA has done so several times in the last few years,” he said.

“We do not want the game of football to be ruined in Pakistan. We have told FIFA that we want to solve the problems of the Pakistan Football Federation. An immediate ban on Pakistan is not the solution to this problem,” he said.

However, Fehmida said the PFF normalization committee should hold elections before its June 30 mandate.

Fehmida Mirza along with newly appointed Director General Pakistan Sports Board Retired Colonel Asif Zaman, IPC Secretary Mohsin Mushtaq and IPC Parliamentary Secretary Seema Nadeem said that the PFF normalization committee will be independent till the given time. And work must continue for fair elections.

He said the PFF normalization committee was formed about 18 months ago but still failed to provide elections.

Four hours later, no peaceful solution was seen and as soon as Shahid Khokhar walked out after the Ashfaq Group refused to vacate the headquarters, Pakistan football once again seemed to be sinking into a deep abyss.