GEORGE TOWN, Cayman Islands (CNS) -- The vice president of the Cayman Islands Football Association (CIFA), Peter Campbell, will be questioned by the executive regarding his possible involvement in the misuse of money that belonged to CIFA, according to acting president Bruce Blake.
Bruce Blake, Acting CIFA President
He said that CIFA was holding off on major changes to its statutes until after the FIFA Congress in Switzerland, when football’s governing body will convey the changes it wants to see at the national level. But changes are coming, he said.
The entire local executive is now tainted by the fallout from former president Jeffrey Webb’s downfall amid the massive FIFA corruption scandal and the revelations during Canover Watson’s trial for corruption -- but so far, no other heads have rolled.
Blake, who has been accused of stubbornly holding onto the leadership against the backdrop of mounting financial scandals, said that Campbell’s position with the association was in question. However, Blake and the rest of the executive remain in place and will take part in the upcoming elections for the new FIFA and CONCACAF presidents.
In just a few days Blake and CIFA treasurer Armando Ebanks will be heading to Switzerland for the 2016 FIFA extraordinary Congress, which will be held in Zürich on 26 February, where they will be voting in elections for new leaders for both bodies and taking part in discussions about cleaning up the game.
Blake told CNS that there would soon be elections for various CIFA executive posts, including that of president, which he has been holding since Webb’s removal. Other CIFA positions that need filling are that of general secretary, which has been vacant since Paul Macey resigned last autumn, and deputy secretary.
He said the position of the current VP, Peter Campbell, was “under discussion”, suggesting that he may be required to step down as investigations are underway into some questionable transfers.
This relates to $250,000 given to Campbell’s company, Black Holdings Ltd, by CIFA for the development of the Centre of Excellence, which appeared to end up in Jeffery Webb’s personal US account via AIS Cayman Ltd, the company owned by Webb and Watson that won the corrupt CarePay contract with the hospital. That money appears to have been used to help Webb buy his mansion in Atlanta, Georgia.
When Blake spoke with CNS this week, he denied any knowledge of the questionable transfers of money floating between CIFA and companies associated with Watson and Webb, as well as that of Black Holdings.
Blake has held onto the leadership of the organisation, despite controversies surrounding last year’s elections, and insists his interest and commitment is the future of local football. The former Maples and Calder lawyer left his lucrative position with the leading offshore law firm last year to “concentrate on football”. If he is not returned as the leader of the organisation after the upcoming elections, then whoever gets the job will have to work hard, he said.
“This is not an organisation where executives can swan in and out. They have to work at it,” he said. “Whoever becomes president must understand everyone has to work.”
After the FIFA Congress later this month, the governing body’s reforms will be replicated at the CIFA level, he said, explaining that the local association has held off making any major changes because they are waiting to see what will be required. He said that all members of CIFA will have a chance to offer input regarding the international summit and, once all of the candidates have declared, get a say in who CIFA should support in the elections for the FIFA and CONCACAF presidents.
Republished with permission of Cayman News Service