by Umaid Wasim
KARACHI: The Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) Normalisation Committee is faced with yet another problem — and it involves another court case.
This time, though, the legal wrangle comes from within.
General secretary Manizeh Zainli has got a stay from a civil court in Lahore, preventing the PFF Normalisation Committee from removing her from her post after differences developed between her and the FIFA-appointed body.
Manizeh said she had “no comment” when contacted by Dawn on Monday for information regarding the case.
The PFF Normalisation Committee also said it wasn’t commenting on the matter since it is sub judice.
“The Pakistan Football Federation Normalisation Committee has taken note of the information being circulated regarding the status of its general secretary Ms. Manizeh Zainli,” it said in a statement on Monday.
“Since the matter is currently sub judice, the Pakistan Football Federation Normalisation Committee will not be commenting on it at this point in time.”
Dawn has learnt that the PFF Normalisation Committee wanted to remove Manizeh from her post citing financial irregularities. Manizeh has made similar allegations against the PFF Normalisation Committee.
It is the latest case faced by the PFF Normalisation Committee involving local courts after several district courts had given stay orders against the Normalisation Committee from holding club scrutiny — the first step towards organising the elections of the PFF; the main part of the mandate given to the Committee by FIFA.
As soon as the news of the differences between Manizeh and the PFF Normalisation Committee emerged on Monday, the rumour mill started churning that the Committee had been ordered to stop working from FIFA.
Manizeh, appointed to the post in March this year, asked Dawn to “contact FIFA for comment” on the situation that has developed between her and the Normalisation Committee.
FIFA CONTINUES TO BACK NC
A FIFA spokesperson told Dawn over the phone on Monday that the world’s football governing body had “no information regarding the situation of the PFF Normalisation Committee general secretary”.
The spokesperson added that there was no truth in the news that the Normalisation Committee had been stopped from working.
“The situation has not changed [from what FIFA president Gianni Infantion had said at the FIFA Congress press conference last month] and FIFA continues to support those in-charge of the PFF Normalisation Committee,” said the spokesperson.
Answering a question from Dawn at the online press conference, Infantino vowed that FIFA wanted to work with the PFF Normalisation Committee in putting Pakistan football back on track.
“The simple fact that there is a Normalisation Committee in Pakistan, as it is in other countries, is a consequence of situation that was already very very complicated and difficult,” Infantino said.
“That’s why with the Asian Football Confederation (AFC), we decided to appoint the NC with some precise duties and bring back the football system in Pakistan. We want to collaborate and we hope that with good services from AFC and FIFA in support of the Normalisation Committee we can overcome the current complicated situation and bring back normality and football the way that Pakistan deserves it.”