Selasa, 29 Maret 2011

When Nurdin Halid and Besoes Insist on Being The Right

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A row over the leadership of Indonesia’s soccer association (PSSI) escalated on Monday when world governing body FIFA said one of its observers had been prevented from attending a PSSI congress.

Indonesia’s government said it had cut funding to the PSSI and will not recognise its chairman after a scheduled assembly to organise the PSSI’s first leadership election in four years was called off when opponents of present incumbent Nurdin Halid stormed in claiming they had been stripped of voting rights.

In a strongly-worded statement FIFA denied that it had called off the PSSI Congress for security reasons. “FIFA’s observer was prevented in being able to observe the PSSI General Assembly in Pekanbaru on 26 March by the PSSI leadership,” FIFA said.

“The claim from the PSSI Secretary General that it was FIFA who decided to cancel the PSSI Congress for alleged security reasons is completely false. On the contrary, the FIFA observer repeatedly requested to go to the Congress venue and was prevented in doing so by the PSSI leadership.

“Once FIFA receives the official report from its observer, FIFA will submit the situation to the relevant body for a decision.” FIFA has traditionally taken a tough line on political interference in the affairs of national soccer associations, last year suspending Nigeria after members of the Nigeria Football Federation were threatened with court action.

In a televised address Indonesia’s Sports Minister Andi Mallarangeng accused the PSSI of incompetence. “To avoid a repeat of the failure of a PSSI congress due to the incompetency of the PSSI leadership...the government stated that it will not acknowledge the leadership of PSSI,” Mallarangeng said.

He said the government will leave it to FIFA to decide whether the election committee formed by the 78-strong congress would be accepted, and if not it will hold another congress before the FIFA deadline of April 30 for a new PSSI leader. Halid, in an interview with a local television channel said the sports minister had defended illegal members of PSSI and therefore should be sacked.

Public calls for Halid, who was jailed in 2007 for misusing funds but continued to run the organisation from his cell, to step down have grown louder with the national team’s performance showing no sign of a revival. The nation is football crazy but has seen little success, never having won the regional ASEAN Cup.

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