Ex-Thai supremo claims graft among ‘FATcats’

  • Football
  • Saturday, 18 Jan 2020

PETALING JAYA: Thailand’s former football supremo has slammed the Football Association of Thailand (FAT) for what he claims are malpractices and money politics in the organisation ahead of their annual congress on Feb 12.

Former president Datuk Worawi Makudi (pic) said he has met Asian Football Confederation (AFC) legal deputy director Andrew Mercer to seek advice on the alleged malpractices in the FAT.

“I went to the AFC headquarters over my complaint of malpractice and corrupt practices in the FAT... I want AFC to investigate FAT, ” said Worawi in a press conference yesterday.

“There are instances of distribution of cheques to Thai League clubs ahead of congress. I have made AFC aware of the issue and I seek their intervention.”

Worawi was looking to challenge FAT president Police-General Somyot Poompunmuang and Nakhon Sawan MP Pinyo Niroj for the federation’s top post but says his nomination may be rejected.

Worawi, a former FIFA executive committee member, was suspended from all football-related activities in 2015 for five years following his conviction for forgery in a Thai court and for failing to cooperate with a FIFA investigation.

His ban was cut by 18 months in 2018 after he took his case to FIFA’s appeals committee. Last year, he was cleared by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) for ethics breach related to forgery and falsification.

However, Worawi claims the FAT have hastily included two new clauses on Nov 15 to reject his nomination on the basis that he had been suspended by FIFA and sued by the FAT.

“I was suspended by FIFA but I was cleared by the CAS of any wrongdoing. My court case with the FAT is still ongoing, so I feel it’s unfair and unjust for me to be disqualified from the contest, ” said Worawi.

“My heart is still in football and I believe I can still contribute to Thai football. I’m confident I can clear the accusations against me in court... if the FAT reject my nomination, I’ll seek advice from my legal advisors.”

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