Sultan Ahmad Shah (right) is in a three-cornered contest for the FAM president's post. His challengers are his son and incumbent deputy president Tengku Abdullah (left) and Johor FA president Tunku Ismail Sultan Ibrahim. – Bernama Photo
PETALING JAYA: It’s official. For the first time in 30 years, Sultan Ahmad Shah will be challenged for the president’s post of the Football Association of Malaysia (FAM).
The 83-year-old FAM president, who has been at the helm since 1984, will be in a three-cornered contest.
Those taking him on are his son and incumbent deputy president Tengku Abdullah and Johor FA president Tunku Ismail Sultan Ibrahim.
Tengku Abdullah is strongly tipped to take over the reins from his ageing father while newcomer Tunku Ismail may pull out of the race.
FAM general-secretary Datuk Hamidin Mohd Amin said that according to FAM’s constitution, those nominated for positions at the congress can withdraw any time before the election.
“As of now, there will be contests for all positions,” Hamidin said at press conference after the final exco meeting for the 2010-2014 session.
Speculation was rife that Sultan Ahmad would step down and pass the baton to his son, the Tengku Mahkota of Pahang who is also the president of the Malaysian Hockey Confederation (MHC).
But the Sultan of Pahang on Saturday announced his interest to stand for a new term (2014-2018) at Wisma FAM in Kelana Jaya.
The Sultan, who has come under fire for the decline of Malaysian football, is ready to defy the odds and defend his post at the 50th congress next month.
There will also be a three-cornered fight for the two deputy presidents’ posts with Datuk Seri Subahan Kamal, Datuk Seri Afandi Hamzah and Datuk Abdul Mokhtar Ahmad in the fray.
The current deputy presidents are Tengku Abdullah and Tan Sri Annuar Musa, who is currently serving a 30-month ban for making unauthorised comments about the national team.
A total of eight candidates will vie for the four vice-presidents’ posts. They are Datuk Takiyuddin Hassan, Datuk Sudarsono Osman, Datuk Rozabil Abdul Rahman, Datuk Astaman Abdul Aziz, Tan Sri Zulkifli Mohd Zin, Datuk Rosmadi Ismail, Datuk Zainol Fadzi Paharuddin and Datuk Wan Ahmad Nizam Hamid.
A record 22 candidates will fight for the eight exco seats. There are also nine candidates for the two women’s exco posistions.