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NC chairman says it is working tirelessly to hold PFF elections

By Our Correspondent
April 16, 2020

KARACHI: Reacting to the harsh criticism from former vice-president of Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) Malik Amir Dogar, the chairman of PFF Normalisation Committee Humza Khan on Wednesday said that the NC was working "tirelessly" to hold the PFF elections as soon as possible.

“I would like to reiterate that we want to hold the PFF elections as soon as possible and leave the federation to the elected representatives,” Humza said. Elaborating the recomposition of the provincial NCs, Humza said: “We have tried our best to replace certain members with alleged links to either faction. We’re making our best efforts to remove people who have any personal or business links with any of the football stakeholders.

“FIFA is in the loop with all the decisions that we take,” he was quick to add. The other day Amir Dogar, also a PTI MNA from Multan, had raised serious questions on the working mode of NC and vowed that he would approach both FIFA and AFC to inform them about the irregularities of the NC and its stance to keep ignoring the genuine stakeholders of football in Pakistan.

Humza said that all funding the NC received from FIFA was properly audited. “All funding that the committee receives from FIFA is being audited and for each and every expenditure, approval is sought from the world body,” said Humza, a former Karachi United footballer.

Humza is very happy with the way FIFA recently praised his NC. “FIFA’s statement that it has seen ‘encouraging developments’ made by the NC during these challenging times of the COVID-19 pandemic is a validation of the work being done by the body to bring football in the country back on track,” Humza said.

He said that they were making all efforts to ensure the health of the NC officials. “Due to the virus, at this point in time, the PFF NC has enacted a work-from-home policy in order to safeguard the health of its officials,” said Humza, whose appointment as NC chairman was criticised by the stakeholders because of his association with KU owner Taha Ali Zai, who was the legal counsel of Ashfaq group during its tussle with former FIFA-recognised Faisal-led PFF.

The PFF NC chairman also said that the virus and resultant lockdown affected plans for the men’s and women’s national teams as well as PFF League. “The PFF NC will make sure that football activities return as soon as the situation is safe,” he was quick to add.

Humza said he has also taken note of several groups trying to spread false information regarding the NC and trying to sabotage the work that is being done. He said that the NC was also working with World Health Organization (WHO) to combat the coronavirus by launching an awareness programme.

Tasked to hold the PFF elections within nine months NC has entered into seventh month of its tenure after taking charge in September last year. It has failed to take any substantial step towards the PFF elections, having only announced provincial NCs whose composition was changed several times following criticism from stakeholders who are of the view that the NC is taking biased decisions to benefit one group, which is led by former PFF Congress member and former KP health minister Syed Zahir Shah.

During its mandate the NC will conduct club scrutiny, hold elections at the district and provincial level before going for PFF elections by mid-June 2020. Sources said unable to meet the target NC will seek extension in its mandate.