The Bureau of the FIFA Council suspended the Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) with immediate effect due to third-party interference, which constitutes a serious violation of the FIFA Statutes.
This situation was prompted by the recent hostile takeover of the PFF headquarters in Lahore by a group of protestors and an alleged decision by certain individuals to remove the FIFA-appointed normalisation committee of the PFF led by Haroon Malik and to hand over the leadership of the PFF to Syed Ashfaq Hussain Shah.
FIFA issued a letter warning that, should the illegitimate occupation of the PFF headquarters not be lifted and the office bearers recognised by FIFA not be permitted free access to the building to carry out their mandate, the matter would be immediately submitted to the Bureau of the Council for decision.
As the situation remains unchanged, the Bureau of the Council has decided to suspend the PFF.
This suspension will only be lifted once FIFA has received confirmation from the normalisation committee of the PFF that the PFF’s premises, accounts, administration and communication channels are again under its full control and it can continue to carry out its mandate without further hindrance.
PFF Normalisation Committee statement:
The FIFA-appointed Normalisation Committee of the Pakistan Football Federation stands with the football community of Pakistan in this unfortunate moment when the country has been suspended by the world football governing body.
The suspension was looming after the group of protestors led by Mr. Ashfaq Hussain Shah illegally occupied the FIFA House, Lahore, failed to vacate the premises despite FIFA’s letter on March 30, 2021 notifying of the potential repercussions of their actions.
Following up on the suspension, the Normalisation Committee can confirm, that FIFA will take further action against the individuals involved in the hostile takeover of the FIFA House on March 27, 2021.
As FIFA has clearly mentioned in its letter addressed to the Pakistan Football Federation Normalisation Committee Chairman Haroon Malik, the suspension will only be lifted when a confirmation is received by FIFA from the PFF Normalisation Committee led by Mr. Malik that the PFF’s premises, accounts, administration and communication channels are again under its full control.
The suspension being lifted also depends on another confirmation by the PFF Normalisation Committee that it can continue to carry out its mandate without further hindrance.
It is highly unfortunate that due to the actions of few, the whole football eco-system of Pakistan — which includes players, officials and coaches — has to suffer and precious time and resources, which could have been spent towards the development of the sport in Pakistan, has to be wasted.
The PFF Normalisation Committee is still at work to ensure the matters are unconditionally resolved and as soon as it regains access to the FIFA House, the PFF accounts and the PFF communication channels without hindrance, full-fledge football activity will be resumed.