Dodoma — MEMBERS of the Football Referees Association of Tanzania (FRAT) went ahead to conduct General Assembly and re-elected Omar Abdulkadir as Chairman despite the directives by the Tanzania Football Federation (TFF) to postpone the elections.
The members objected the TFF order issued on Thursday to suspend the election on grounds that they were not satisfied with its preparations.
Instead, the members re-elected Abdulkadir to lead the association for the next four years. However, TFF Information Officer Boniface Wambura said they contravened the regulations by staging the elections and that the matter will be brought up to the Election Committee for further determination.
Chairman of the FRAT Electoral Committee, Muhidin Ndolanga poured the blame to TFF Election Committee Chairman, Deogratius Lyatto, who wanted the association to send the election funds to the Treasurer while knowing the Executive Committee does not have that fund.
"I told him that the executive committee does not have that fund but a well-wisher has offered to sponsor the election and that is why you are all here", said Ndolanga, who is also the TFF honorary president. Ndolanga added: "Lyatto insisted that if we do not have that money, then the elections must be suspended and I told him I see no need of doing so.
In fact I told him that we had already distributed invitation letters and members are already in Dodoma and there was no way the election will be postponed."
Earlier, Abdulkadir told the general assembly members that it was the ideal time to let the local soccer governing body, TFF, know the referees' importance and according to their constitution, all elections matters are supposed to be handled by FRAT Election Committee.
Ndolanga said Abdulkadir scooped 28 out of 29 votes and his opponent Ame Sentimea managed a single vote. Juma Chaponda was picked Vice-Chairman by 25 votes while Charles Ndagala is the new Secretary General. Jovin Ndimbo got all 29 votes to be announced the treasurer while Soud Abdi is the TFF general assembly member.
The executive committee members are Emmanuel Chaula, and Samson Mkotya. Abdulkadir called for cooperation among referees to propel the country's football standard to the better heights. Morogoro FRAT Chairman Clavence Msavila said they should not go back to the elections at any costs, be it a pressure from TFF or anywhere for the interests of the associations.
His sentiments was also shared by Kagera Secretary General, Frederick Tibaijuka who said the newly elected leadership should be firm and whoever will call for re-election should have their membership called off.
The members also called for stern disciplinary measure for outgoing Secretary General, Leslie Liunda including suspending his membership on grounds that he has failed to stand for the association interests.