GENERAL SECRETARY of the TT Football Association (TTFA) Ramesh Ramdhan said he is taking legal action after not being paid for over six months. Other TTFA staff members were paid outstanding salaries a week and a half ago by the normalisation committee, led by businessman Robert Hadad.
A local media outlet on Saturday reported that office staff at the TTFA had been paid outstanding salaries owed to them for the months of March, April, May and June totalling $400,000. Newsday was informed that the office staff were paid on July 9.
Technical director Dion La Foucade and director of football Richard Piper have also been paid.
National football teams' technical officials, including men’s coach Terry Fenwick, and communications officer Shaun Fuentes were also not included on the payroll. Fenwick has not been paid since he took up the post in January.
Ramdhan told Newsday on Saturday that he is confused why only some TTFA employees were paid.
Ramdhan, who also learned that several national coaches did not receive their outstanding salaries, is not pleased that he was not paid.
“I am very much concerned, I have a problem with that because that amounts to unequal treatment because I am head of the secretariat. I am in charge of the office and the office staff were paid and I was not. I am concerned and I am taking legal action.”
The normalisation committee was hired by FIFA to run local football in March, replacing the former TTFA executive which was led by president William Wallace. Wallace and his team call themselves the United TTFA.
Wallace was elected president of the TTFA last November, replacing David John-Williams.
Ramdhan said, “As head of the secretariat I thought I should have been the first person to be paid and you can quote me because right now I have no fear because I feel I am being discriminated against. I can’t understand why because I have a contract, I have been working hard, I have been working with Mr Hadad and I don’t understand his selective payment of persons.”
Ramdhan was hired in December, 2019 as general secretary shortly after Wallace won the elections. When the TTFA executive was removed by FIFA, Ramdhan held his position.
Ramdhan made every effort to ensure other staff at TTFA was taken care of. The TTFA general secretary said he organised a loan to pay other staff for the month of February, but Ramdhan asked not be included in that payment.
Ramdhan said he was told more than a month ago he would be paid “soon.”
Keith Look Loy, who was an instrumental member in the United TTFA election campaign, said he was happy for those who were paid. However, he said, “I am perplexed as anyone else as to why some staff were paid and others not.”
Look Loy said because the TTFA accounts are frozen by First Citizens he is uncertain how the normalisation committee got the money to pay the staff.
“Nobody seems to know who has paid the staff. Nobody seems to know where the money has come from. What is the origin and the source of the money? Under FIFA regulations, FIFA funding can only come into TTFA accounts…where has the money come from to pay these people. Is it private money? I don’t know…nobody can say what is the source of the money that was paid to staff and that is a total lack of transparency.”
Fenwick and Fuentes declined comment on the matter.