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GFF moving ahead with ‘game switch’ investigation

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By Avenash Ramzan

Systems are being put in place to kickstart investigations into the Guyana Jaguars/Mexico World Cup Qualifier, which was switched from Guyana to Mexico in 2012.

Guyana Football Federation (GFF) President, Wayne Forde, in giving an update on the matter this week, said the Federation is keen on honouring its promise to start the process within 14 days of the last Ordinary Congress, held on May 27 last.

Forde told reporters this week that a consultant has been hired to commence the process, adding that the Federation will meet the 14-day mandate in terms of starting the investigation.

He mentioned that the consultant has been going through documents and doing interviews, all in the interest of putting together the dossier that is required for any investigator to be updated as to where to start the process.

Current GFF president Wayne Forde (left) and former president Franklin Wilson

After news broke of the investigation being opened following the successful tabling and passing of the motion at the Ordinary Congress, Franklin Wilson, president at the time of the ‘switch’, said all the relevant information pertaining to the match is in possession of the Federation.

“There is no need to expend much needed dollars to unearth what transpired when the facts that can lead to closure on this issue, are already accessible and in the possession of the GFF. Closure of this would be a plus for all and sundry and Guyana as a whole,” Wilson said in a statement.

Wilson further disclosed that he and the current GFF President would have had discussions on the matter before and he is urging that wisdom and good sense be allowed to prevail.

Forde said, “While I respect the former president’s views, I’m obligated to respect the mandate of the members who happen to be the highest decision-making body (for football) in the country, and every member that was represented at the Congress voted and it was actually a unanimous decision to pursue an investigation.”

Quizzed on whether all the necessary information and documentation as outlined by Wilson are indeed in the possession of the Federation, Worde responded by saying, “All is a relative term, and I’m not sure I want to comment on what Mr. Wilson means by all, but I’m sure he would be more than willing to elaborate on that if he so asked by anyone of you guys (reporters).”

The essence of the motion put forward by the members is that the Executive Committee investigates of the circumstances surrounding the selling of the game rights- Guyana versus Mexico- and everything that would have ensued.

Guyana’s Golden Jaguars and Mexico were set to clash at the Guyana National Stadium in 2012 as part of the 2014 World Cup Qualifier, but the Federation sold the hosting rights for the game, which was then moved to the BBVA Compass Stadium in Texas.

The investigation will seek to unearth the reason for the switch, and the financial issues associated with the move, more specifically how much money was made and what is owed to players.

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