FIFA asked to look into claims of wrongdoing in Indonesia

Wed Mar 20, 2013 4:51pm IST

A logo of the International Federation of Football Association (FIFA) is pictured at the Home of FIFA in Zurich July 5, 2012. REUTERS/Michael Buholzer/Files

A logo of the International Federation of Football Association (FIFA) is pictured at the Home of FIFA in Zurich July 5, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Michael Buholzer/Files

REUTERS - Sunday's extraordinary congress in Jakarta that was hailed as a success by Indonesian soccer chiefs involved illegal practices and should be reconvened, a sacked official said on Wednesday.

A peace deal to end a lengthy power struggle for control of Indonesian soccer looked to have been agreed with rival factions saying they would unite leagues and national teams to work as one in order to avoid a FIFA ban.

But former Indonesian Football Association (PSSI) member Farid Rahman said the meeting had not followed agreed procedure signed in a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) by the body and the rival Indonesian Soccer Rescue Committee (KPSI) and witnessed by FIFA.

Rahman and five of his colleagues left Sunday's meeting after attempts were made by PSSI chairman Djohar Arifin Husein to add further points to the agenda after the agreed matters had been discussed.

"The agenda in the booklet is different from the agenda agreed in the MoU. It is not legal," Rahman told Reuters via telephone.

"It is a mess, embarrassing for Indonesia."

Sunday's meeting at a luxury hotel was marred by jostling and shouting with almost 500 police deployed to help bring to an end the messy conflict that has seen the soccer-obsessed country hit new lows in international competition.

The meeting was attended by observers from FIFA and Rahman urged them to investigate his claims at the world governing body's two-day executive committee meeting starting on Wednesday in Switzerland.

"FIFA has an executive committee meeting. They have made their report. But the six of us who stepped out of the meeting also made a report of the congress," Rahman said, also querying the validity of the appointment of the new PSSI general secretary Hadiyandra.

Rahman has written to FIFA on behalf of the six members - other are Bob Hippy, Mawardy Nurin, Sihar Sitorus, Tudy Dau, Widodo Santoso - asking what they planned to do about what he said was a violation of statutes.

Rahman said the six had been fired for walking out of the congress but he felt that their departure was necessary to avoid a possible FIFA ban, a frequently suggested threat.

"We stepped out because we wanted to save Indonesian football from a ban," Rahman added.

"We are happy that Indonesia is not going to be suspended but we think they should redo it (the congress)."

(Reporting by Patrick Johnston in Singapore, editing by Amlan Chakraborty)

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