FIFA suspends PFF due to third party interference

Faizan Lakhani
FIFA suspends PFF due to third party interference / Photo: File

Karachi: The world governing body on Wednesday suspended Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) after a group led by Syed Ashfaq Hussain Shah forcibly took control of PFF from FIFA-appointed Normalisation Committee (NC) under chairmanship of Haroon Malik.

A statement by the governing body confirmed that Bureau of the FIFA Council suspended the 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,” it said.

The group led by Ashfaq Shah stormed into PFF headquarters last month, forcing Haroon Malik and the NC to vacate the office and its control.

FIFA had termed the takeover ‘illegal’ and issued an ultimatum that NC should be handed over the PFF control by March 31 otherwise Pakistan could face a suspension.

The Ashfaq group had ignored the deadline and announced to continue its hold over PFF headquarters.

Following the refusal by Ashfaq group, the Bureau of the Council has now 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,” FIFA said.

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FIFA suspends PFF due to third party interference