by Natasha Raheel
KARACHI: Former national coach Nasir Ismail revealed that the Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) owes him more than Rs 1.6 million for a period of seven years in accordance with the Asian Football Confederation’s (AFC) AID-27 Programmes.
The Aid-27 Programmes were set up by the AFC to help the developing countries, with the coaches receiving salaries directly from the AFC for their work on the project.
Ismail is the second coach to speak up against the PFF over alleged embezzlement after former national player and coach Gohar Zaman highlighted the issue earlier. Both held a press conference at the Karachi Press Club on Tuesday and appealed to international bodies to investigate PFF accounts.
They claim that the PFF also used the names of at least four other coaches — Shahzad Anwar, Sajjad Mehmood along with two other women coaches — out of the 27 working in the programme.
“I’m not interested in politics, I just need my salary for the work I’ve done,” Ismail told The Express Tribune. “I wrote to the AFC as well and they only responded once, saying that the matter was being investigated, but nothing happened. My name was used over and over again by the PFF to take money from the AFC but I never knew about it. I was a part of the Aid-27 Programmes from 2005 till 2012.”
However, he found out in 2013 that the AFC had allocated $1,500 per month for coaches with A-Licenses, while the PFF gave them only $250 every two or three months.
According to Ismail, the sum owed to him was briefly transferred to his account by the PFF due to an AFC audit, as they had to show that the coaches were getting the money.
He went on to claim that the PFF later forged his signature and wrote a fake letter to the AFC in his name, maintaining that Ismail is donating his AFC Financial Assistance Programme salary for the development of football in the country. “I have the fake letter with me, I took my time to gather the evidence,” added Ismail.
Meanwhile, Zaman said he had refused to return his rightful Rs 1 million to the PFF. “And for that, they fired me,” said the Peshawar-based coach.
PFF secretary Ahmed Yar Khan Lodhi, who the two coaches claimed asked them to donate their earnings to the PFF, could not be reached for comment.