GEORGE TOWN: New boss. New vision.
The newly elected Football Association of Penang (FAP) president Dr Amar Pritpal Abdullah kicked off his leadership in style by making a promise to settle their Premier League players’ outstanding salaries amounting to RM3.5mil.
The players have not received their monthly income for four-and-a-half months.
The FAP are currently laden with a total debt of RM11.2mil.
Amar became the FAP president after edging Penang Deputy Speaker Datuk Seri Ho Kwee Cheng 17-15 in a two-horse race at an Emegency General Meeting at the Heritage Club on Sunday.
Amar said he needed some time to sort out the FAP’s financial issues.
“I fully understand the plight of our players as football today is no longer just about sport but it’s their source of income,” said Amar, who has been serving the FAP as an independent delegate since 2011.
“The priority is to settle the four-and-a-half month salaries due to our Premier League players. The amount is big and we need some time to settle this,” said Amar.
“I’m glad that with the help of our Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow, we’ll be able to solve the salary woes as well as the players’ contributions to the Employees Provident Fund (EPF), which is also part of the RM11.2mil debt that we are facing.”
Amar, who is also the Nibong Tebal FA president since 2000, said he was passionate about the sport and would find ways to take Penang football to greater heights.
For a start, he has asked Kwee Cheng to be part of his committee.
“Kwee Cheng lost the presidency but he’s sincere and has offered his services due to his love of football. He’ll be a part of my committee that will work towards helping Penang football regain its status,” he said.
He hopes to guide Penang to a top-five finish next season.
“I’ll also try to bring back many Penang players who have gone to other states to seek greener pastures,” said Amar.
He also plans to hire at least three imports to add depth to the team.
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