Venold Coombs, president of St. Vincent and the Grenadines Football Federation. (IWN photo)

St. Vincent and the Grenadines Football Federation head, Venold Coombs, has denied that his presidency is in jeopardy as world football governing body, FIFA, has asked him to explain the use of US$143,000 and a Supreme Court garnishee order on the Federation’s bank accounts.

He further accused persons of trying to “nasty” football by leaking internal documents to the media.

“I must tell you, that document you have there is an internal document, a privilege document and … the individual who put such a document outside should resign,” he said of a letter obtained by I-Witness News, in which FIFA asked for explanations.

A source familiar with the workings of the SVGFF told I-Witness News that as of Friday “the fate of President of the SVGFF rests in the hands of FIFA and CONCACAF, following the 2013 Financial Assistance Programme (FAP) audit report, adding, that FIFA has threatened “the severest of sanctions”.

“In fact, paying bills is already an arduous task due to a set of protocols the President now has to follow in the interim. …  It is beyond a rumour when I state that elements within that body are now … formulating plans from today (Friday) for a no confidence motion against the President.

“One senior executive member is already starting to mobilise a team for a possible cricket-like take over,” the source said, referring to the ouster of former president of the Cricket Association, Julian Jack, via a vote of no confidence on May 24.

Ousted cricket chief Julian Jack accuses executive members of being ‘snakes’

Coombs supported the no-confidence motion on the floor of the meeting and cited the Football Federation as an example of good sports administration.

The source said that in a letter sent to Coombs, FIFA cited the 2013 Financial Assistance Programme (FAP) REPORT, which, among other things, pointed out that at least two executive members of the SVGFF have received various sums of monies without proper documentation.

The document also questions the co-mingling of the FAP funds with other monies and unauthorised usage, and over $10,000 in bank charges as a result of issuing bad cheques.

“This situation has festered coming off the heels of the 2012 FAP report, which among other things, dealt with the Ford (St. Vincent Co-operative Bank) bank account scandal. Both reports were done by KPMG,” the source said.

President defends himself as auditors ask questions about $202,000 of Football Federation money

But when asked about his presidency being in jeopardy, Coombs told I-Witness News, “I don’t know about that at all.

“That’s a mischief person. Who printing that is bent on mischief and nastiness and that is something really and truly that should be condemned by all and sundry.”

Asked in light of his comments what level of support he receives from his executive, Coombs said, “I enjoy full support of the executive…

“There are things that have been hyped out there by people who are sour grapes and malcontents, who just nasty and want to create mischief and just want to put football in the gutter. There are organisations that are just nasty, corruptly-run but the media not mentioning about them,” he further told I-Witness News, but declined to name these organisations.

He, however, said that the efforts to “nasty football” will not work, “because people know the kind of things I have been doing for football here, no other president has done that.

“There is no other president of football as successful as me. The programmes I have put in place, the developmental trust, the successes…” he said, adding that, among other things, his executive brought the CONCACAF president and a large delegation to SVG, and for the first time coaches are getting license in SVG.

Coombs further added that he and his regional colleagues revived the Windward Island tournament.

“So, you will have your jealous people. This thing is just envy and jealousy. And football is a very popular game and monies come from abroad, so you have people with their jealousy,’ he told I-Witness News.

One reply on “SVG football chief denies his presidency ‘in jeopardy’ after FIFA inquiry”

  1. The surprise at Peace Memorial Hall happened because it was never explained to the executive or other members. The president seems to think because he fought hard for the funds, he has the right to disburse it the way he pleases. That’s a No! no! The funds belong to the federation and every penny should be accounted for. I was informed that the prize giving episode was a fraud, because money was given out using the buddy system I referred to in an earlier document.
    If the auditors got the necessary documents, then case closed. So Coombs should stop bitching and give the necessary documents to the auditors. But that’s if he has them, because he appears to be stalling and blaming everybody for his tardiness. If he doesn’t like the heat in the kitchen, then he should get to hell out, because he’s the one that throwing a bad light on football.

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