Secret oath for Soca Warriors

Author: 
Lasana Liburd
Date Published: 
2003-03-18
Source: 
Trinidad Express

Trinidad and Tobago footballers must all conform to various terms and conditions outlined by the Trinidad and Tobago Football Federation (T&TFF) before being considered for national duty.

However, no one but the T&TFF executive committee knows what these conditions are. And they are not talking.

T&TFF president Oliver Camps did not answer his cell phone and failed to respond to messages left by the Express seeking answers on several executive committee decisions taken last Sunday.

A release by T&TFF press officer, Shaun Fuentes, stated that “terms and conditions of services for players called to the national squads and national selections were discussed and approved”.

Fuentes explained that he could give no further details. “It will be revealed shortly,” he said.

And a spokesman for the 19 senior team players whose suspensions were recently lifted by the T&TFF also admitted they were in the dark. He did say, though, that they no longer expected to be included in technical director Hannibal Najjar’s team for next week’s CONCACAF Gold Cup qualifying tournament.

The newly-formed Players’ Association is expected to make an official response soon.

The 19 players were initially brought before a three-member investigative committee—made up of chairperson Sandra Basheer, Omar Khan and Joey Carew—for walking out on a national session more than a month ago in protest at the training conditions.

However, the T&TFF yesterday knocked its investigative committee—comprising three non-T&TFF members—for offering an “inconclusive” report.

The release noted that the investigating committee failed to individually interview the players, as well as manager George Joseph, technical director Najjar and “a host of other persons whom the executive committee considered would have been helpful”.

Regardless, the T&TFF stated that the matter was now closed and thanked the committee members for their help.

The release also stated that a “new policy” was introduced for clubs/teams wishing to travel overseas which would also “be revealed shortly”.

The T&TFF also announced the start of a Super League this year which will comprise 10 clubs drawn from all the regional associations affiliated to the federation. The federation’s financial status was also reviewed. On all the aforementioned decisions, Camps could not be located for a response, while Fuentes could not answer any questions posed by the Express.