Jamaican football crisis deepens even as RSPL uncertainty continues

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Photo: JFF President - Captain Horace Burrell

The supreme body governing local football, the Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) has reacted angrily to utterances made the PLCA. In a tersely worded press release, designed to clear the air they responded to claims made by the PLCA Chairman, Edward Seaga. The JFF is adamant that they have not interfered
but sought to assist in resolving the issues club football are now faced with.

Below is the full statement provided by the JFF:

The Jamaica Football Federation is extremely disappointed at the untimely remarks reportedly made by the Chairman of the PLCA and the PFAJ as published in the Jamaica Gleaner of Sunday, September 7th.

These remarks were made after an emergency meeting called by the JFF on September 5th to address concerns expressed by some clubs in the national premier league. At this meeting all clubs were allowed to express their views and Mr. Seaga himself was offered the floor on many occasions. The meeting ended with definitive decisions with timelines arising out of five hours of discussion and a degree of consensus.

For Mr. Seaga to say that the JFF 'interfered' in the running of the league is unfortunate and uninformed. It is the duty of the JFF to address any issue or issues concerning football. The JFF is the governing body for all football in the island of Jamaica including the national premier league; women's football; schoolboy football; parish leagues; community football; grassroots football; corner league and street football.

It is absolutely not true to say that the JFF has interfered in the running of the League. In fact the JFF has been criticized by many for too much of a hands off approach as it allowed the PLCA and PFAJ to fulfil their mandate.

In response the JFF wishes to state and re-iterate the following:
• Whenever there are issues of concern that are brought to the attention of the JFF, it has a duty to seek to address same. No entity or individual can be allowed to make continuous negative statements despite efforts to bring resolution
• The remarks attributed to former General Secretary of the JFF regarding the unsustainability of the league were sincere and justified and were recently confirmed by Mr. Seaga when he pulled Tivoli Gardens FC from the league at a time when Red Stripe had not yet publicly announced their full commitment to a new period of sponsorship. It is this reality that has led the JFF to seek a new course in the establishment of a franchise system to which it is fully committed.
• The President of the JFF, Captain Horace Burrell is on public record for recognizing on numerous occasions the role of Mr. Seaga in increasing the level of sponsorship of the league.

The JFF's focused attention at this time is to ensure that the league is developed to a professional entity in the medium and long term in the interest of the players, fans and sponsors and it will do everything to ensure this.