Monday, 23 August 2010

Irish Football Association

There have been further developments today at the Irish Football Association, with newspaper and radio reports of four resignations from the executive committee.

I have on numerous occasions expressed my concerns about the governance arrangements at the IFA.  I have also emphasised that the IFA needs to move, and move swiftly, to regain the confidence of all concerned. 

Today's developments reinforce the urgent need to have a full and rigorous review of the IFA's structures and governance arrangements.

It is important to remember that an Independent Report was produced into the dismissal of the previous IFA chief executive and in the wake of that I had asked the IFA board to take control of the situation and press forward with restructuring and a number of other measures.  It is difficult to justify putting public money into the IFA when at the same time money is being lost through poor governance.  I

t is reported that because of the way in which the dismissal of the previous chief executive was carried out, the IFA was out of pocket by around £500,000.  That is money which could have been invested back into football.

The IFA is the body responsible for the development of football in Northern Ireland and football deserves to have a body that is fit for purpose.  That is in the best interests of the the sport, the IFA, the international team, the supporters and all the clubs, at every level in the game.

As things stand at present, with resignations, post-dated resignations, qualified resignations etc, the whole situation reminds me more and more of a 'Brian Rix farce'.

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