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Sports Commentary: Violations of the USVI Soccer Association statutes and financial irregularities - Part 2
Published on August 22, 2017 Email To Friend    Print Version

By Collister M. Fahie

84 Answers

In my recent commentary dated August 7 (Violations of the USVI Soccer Association statutes and financial irregularities), I was seeking information from the soccer organization I have been a member of for over two decades. I will not bore you the readers with any pontificating or aggrandizing. I will simply provide the answers to the concerns, obtained directly from minutes of previous meetings and the 2017 USVISA Congress held on August 6, 2017, in St Croix, US Virgin Islands.

collister_fahie2.jpg
Collister M. Fahie lives on St Thomas, US Virgin Islands. He is the Legal Administrative Coordinator/Public Safety Officer for the Government of the Virgin Islands. (Public Employees Relations Board) He was elected Administrative Secretary of the USVI Soccer Association in 1998 and subsequently elected unopposed as First Vice President of the USVI Soccer Association four years later (2002). He is the President of the United We Stand Sports Club, Inc. (UWS Sports Club) a sports event non-profit corporation and voting member of the USVI Soccer Association. He is also President of Advanced Soccer Academy, Inc.; USVI non-profit corporation that operates Juvenile Delinquency Prevention Programs (JDPP) since 2006. He has an Associate’s Degree in Paralegal Studies and a Bachelors of Arts Degree in Legal Studies from Keiser University.
I will leave it up to you as readers to make to your own conclusions about the state of affairs of soccer in the USVI.

1. The USVISA did not provide receipts or invoices to the membership for payments or other funding received for national team travel that was not part of the FIFA FAP.

2. The USVISA did not provide receipts or invoices to the membership pertaining to CONCACAF, CFU, and Olympic committee grants received during 2016.

3. The USVISA did not explain to the membership why children pay for camps when the USVISA gets free financial assistance from FIFA and why AYSO and La Raza youth programs have replaced the traditional grassroots program.

4. The USVISA did not provide receipts or invoices to the membership of how funds are being spent on the women’s program but the USVISA just lists the amount that is spent.

5. The USVISA did not explain to the membership what happens to soccer equipment and uniforms after they are placed in the St Thomas office.

6. Financial payments for the losing clubs should be increased according to a proposal given to the USVISA.

7. The USVISA did not explain to the membership how paying and having signed contracts for A. Randolph, asst. secretary of operations and beach soccer team manager, and Helenites SC representative, M. Gaikwad, asst. secretary of administration and acting general secretary; and technical committee member and UVI grassroots, J. Limeburner, first vice president and USVISA coach, and USVISA manager and La Raza grassroots representative, and La Raza SC representative, T. Jones, executive member and USVISA manager and Skills SC representative, and D. Rogers, grassroots program STX, schools program, school youth leagues, USVISA coach and Skills SC representative, and all other executive members is not a conflict of interest.

8. The USVISA did not explain to the membership why Hillaren Frederick (as president of the USVISA) used one signature on USVISA checks without the knowledge of C. Freeman, second vice president who had to be called by the Bank of St Croix about transactions of fraudulent banking instruments.

9. The USVISA did not explain to the membership why C. Freeman, second v. president, M. Jennings, executive member, F. Francis, former executive member, have not been given financial reports, invoices in and out of the association until the last quarter.

10. The USVISA did not explain to the membership how Angenie Khanai and Gregory Engelbeck (consultants to USVISA) to assist in FIFA FAP funding programs at a cost of no less than $3,000 and no more than $5,000 to assist with FIFA FAP application and also to create a strategic plan is not a conflict of interest and a violation of FIFA’s code of ethics and duty of neutrality.

11. Angenie Khanie and Gregory Engelbeck are former official representatives of CONCACAF and/or FIFA and now appointed consultants for the USVISA.

12. The USVISA did not explain to the membership where deposits listed as uncategorized deposits as reported by the bookkeeper Lisa Mordhorst come from.

13. The USVISA did not explain the difference in ($276,514) funds for total revenues FY 2015 – net result FY-2016 (79% sourced from FIFA).

14. The USVISA did not explain to the membership if there is any co-mingling of funds from the FIFA FAP funds and the goal project funds for the goal project construction being done at Estate Bethlehem for FY 2014 - FY 2017.

15. The USVISA did not explain to the membership why the FIFA FAP request dated 12/23/15 for $250,000 is listed in accordance with FAP budget and listed by Bert & Smith Co. And approved by FIFA (Marcus Katner) while the FIFA FAP received on 08/24/16 is listed but not categorized by Bert Smith & Co. And does not show who at FIFA approved the disbursement and in accordance with what USVISA FAP budget it is disbursed to cover.

16. The USVISA did not explain why the finance committee, audit committee, compliance officer (general secretary), technical director, marketing and communications director positions are not filled and when they will be filled.

17. There were no financial management policies in place since 2011 according to the USVISA.

18. According to the USVISA some vendors are still owed for 2017.

19. The USVISA executive committee did write many checks without funds in the bank accounts since many checks “bounced” and the president did write checks that the acting general secretary was allegedly negligent in signing.

20. The USVISA executive committee could not ensure that the necessary signatures were on all checks because they did not know how many bank accounts or which banks had USVISA bank accounts or who was signatories on which accounts.

21. The USVISA president has withheld financial information from other signatories and executive committee members.

22. One of the bank accounts operated by the USVISA is in Bank of St Croix as reported by bookkeeper Lisa Mordhorst.

23. The USVISA has a record of operating bank accounts in the Bank of Nova Scotia.

24. The Bank of Nova Scotia has one bank account recorded as closed and three bank accounts not recorded by the USVISA or by bookkeeper Lisa Mordhorst as closed.

25. The USVISA has on record another bank account opened in FirstBank according to executive committee members.

26. The signatories on the USVISA Bank of St Croix account are known as reported by the bookkeeper Lisa Mordhorst.

27. The signatories on the other USVISA bank accounts are not reported by the bookkeeper Lisa Mordhorst or the auditor Bert Smith & Co.

28. Former general secretary K. Cornelius was a signatory to one of the USVISA bank accounts.

29. M. Gaikwad is a signatory to one or more of the USVISA bank accounts.

30. Bert Smith & Co. did not report on USVISA funds received from sponsorships, donations, and grants other than the FIFA FAP.

31. Bert Smith & Co. did not report on USVISA funds received from CONCACAF, the Olympic committee and/or CFU.

32. It was reported that Bert Smith & Co did two audits for the year 2016.

33. Norman M. Graves signed on behalf of Bert & Smith Co. on form 4 of the FIFA FAP disbursement documents.

34. Norman M. Graves did not sign the confirmation of independence and professional competence and the special engagement instructions and FAP regulations agreement on behalf of Bert Smith & Co. on April 11, 2017.

35. The confirmation of independence and professional competence and the special engagement instructions and FAP regulations agreement signed on April 11, 2017, was signed not signed by any individual but was signed - Bert Smith and Co.

36. The USVISA executive committee did not provide the contract and all payments made to Forward Sports and STX athletic by the USVISA to the membership.

37. The USVISA executive committee did not provide all contracts and payments made to Mannassah Realty, Zenon Construction Corporation, and Linda Cruise to the membership.

38. The USVISA executive committee did not provide all payments and contracts for executive committee meetings, per diems, and catering to the membership.

39. The USVISA president did provide a letter from lt sports law on behalf of former technical director Ahmed Mohamed to the executive committee.

40. The USVISA president did provide a letter from the USVISA in response to LT Sports Law to the USVISA executive committee.

41. The USVISA did provide information related to legal issues concerning the USVISA and stated they were not going anywhere.

42. The USVISA did not provide any documents pertaining to the USVISA’s attempt to obtain a work permit on behalf of the former technical director Ahmed Mohamed to the membership.

43. The USVISA did not provide the contract between the USVISA and the former technical director Ahmed Mohamed to the membership.

44. The USVISA did not provide cancelled checks of all payments made to the former technical director Ahmed Mohamed during the months of December 2015 and April 2017 to the membership.

45. The USVISA did not provide all cancelled checks and checks signed with 0ne signature from all USVISA accounts from January 2011 to July 2017.

46. The USVISA did not state when the executive committee or congress authorized the opening of multiple bank accounts, nor did they – provide the minutes of any executive committee or congress meetings where this was voted on or approved.

47. The president of the USVISA decided to retain consultants Angenie Khanie and Gregory Engelbeck to assist the USVISA in getting FIFA FAP funds.

48. The president contacted and decided on the consultants to assist in getting FIFA FAP funds prior to informing the executive committee.

49. Pricewaterhousecoopers (PWC) did not complete the central review of the USVISA finances.

50. The USVISA has 501(c) status as a non-profit organization but there is no information as to whether the organization is in good standing from the government.

51. The USVISA president was fined and reprimanded by FIFA in 2011 for his role in the $40,000 “bribes for votes” scandal.

52. A small amount of information and documents were presented to the membership about how much funds the USVISA president received (personally or on behalf of the USVISA) from CONCACAF, CFU, or the Olympic committee from 2011 to 2015.

53. No information or documents were presented to the membership about how much funds the USVISA president received (personally or on behalf of the USVISA) from the VI legislature, department of sports, parks, & recreation, department of tourism from 2011 to 2017.

54. No information or documents were presented to the membership about how much funds the USVISA president received (personally or on behalf of the USVISA) from private entities, Scotiabank, Bellows International or any other sponsor from 2011 to 2017.

55. No information or documents were presented to the membership about how much funds the USVISA president received (personally or on behalf of the USVISA) from other confederations other than CONCACAF, other member associations, and international football officials.

56. No copies of checks paid to the government for the lease of the land at Estate Bethlehem was presented to the membership and the name of the agency that is being paid was not disclosed.

57. Copies of all checks paid for legal representation was not presented to the membership but the name of legal counsel is V. Fuller, Jr.

58. The date the FirstBank bank account was opened and who are the signatories on the account was not presented to the membership.

59. The amount of funds on the FirstBank bank account was not presented to the membership.

60. The USVISA did contribute a large amount of funds to the St Thomas Cricket Association in 2016 to refurbish and upgrade the Cancryn cricket field.

61. There have been many women, youth, and beach soccer festivals held by the USVISA in 2016 and 2017 costing a projected $64,400 in 2015 but no actual receipts and invoices were presented for 2016 and 2017 to the membership.

62. The amount the USVISA paid for uniforms is unknown but it was reported that $17,000 was being fundraised in 2015 to pay Forward Sports and at least $100,000 or more was paid to STX Athletics in 2017.

63. The uniform supplier for the USVISA was forward sports in 2014 but the supplier in 2017 is now STX Athletics.

64. One of the owners of the uniform supplier STX Athletics is the assistant general secretary L. Bailey.

65. The acting technical director who was appointed to serve until June (2017) is E. Bailey (the father of the assistant general secretary L. Bailey).

66. The acting general secretary is m. Gaikwad (the assistant secretary of administration)

67. The acting general secretary’s salary is unknown.

68. The assistant general secretary’s salary is unknown.

69. The acting technical director’s salary is unknown.

70. The general secretary, technical director, and marketing & communications positions remain unfilled.

71. It was reported that STX Athletics furnished uniforms for the USVISA and L. Bailey as asst. general secretary is one of the owners of STX Athletics, and his father Eustace Bailey is the appointed acting technical director and also the former women’s development officer who was getting paid $2,500 a month from the USVISA.

72. No contracts were provided to the membership for executive members, general secretaries, and the technical directors.

73. It was reported that the USVISA did make large monetary payments to E. Taylor and G. Monticieux.

74. It is not known if the USVISA received $93,000 in uncategorized deposits in 2016 but the USVISA bookkeeper Lisa Mordhorst did report that the office had received deposit receipts and there was no description as to what it’s for so they are classed as uncategorized on the financial report until information is received about the deposits.

75. These uncategorized deposits are unaccounted for and the amount and their origin are unknown.

76. The USVISA received $500,000 as a bonus from FIFA World Cup 2014.

77. The $500,000 FIFA World Cup 2014 bonus along with the FIFA FAP of $250,000 was spent by the USVISA in 2015-2016.

78. The Olympic committee provided $30,000 to the USVISA in 2015 for training.

79. FIFA provided other financial assistance separate from the FIFA FAP to the USVISA in 2014-2017.

80. No documentation of payments, receipts, invoices or cancelled checks were provided to the membership for travelling done on behalf of the USVISA or any contracts for trucking of soil at the construction site at Estate Bethlehem in St Croix.

81. The names of persons who travelled on behalf of the USVISA to CFU, CONCACAF, and FIFA meetings and events are H. Frederick, J. Limeburner, A. Randolph, M. Gaikwad, K. Cornelius, F. Francis, and T. Jones – members of the USVISA executive committee.

82. Bert Smith & Co replaced Benham & Hodge PC as auditors of the USVISA.

83. The USVISA conducted both a FIFA program audit and a statutory audit in 2016 and Pricewaterhousecoopers will be conducting a central audit of the USVISA in 2017.

84. The membership has a right to know all information concerning the USVI Soccer Association as per the USVISA statutes.
 
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