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Monday, April 29, 2024

FAM boss Hamidin open to criticism, ready to be challenged


Hamidin Amin has been leading the Football Association of Malaysia since 2018. (Bernama pic)

PETALING JAYA: Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) president Hamidin Amin says he is open to criticism from any party, including former youth and sports minister Khairy Jamaluddin.

Responding to Khairy’s statement that it is time for changes within FAM to ensure more effective management and governance, Hamidin, who has been FAM president since 2018, said he is prepared to be challenged by anyone to lead the national football body.

“That’s his personal view. Whatever we do, we must adhere to the statutes or constitution,” Bernama quoted him as saying.

“Anyone can contest (for the president’s post); there’s no issue (about that).

“I am open-minded and welcome criticism, especially after the national squad’s performance in the AFC Under-23 Asian Cup and the recent poison-pen letter.

“I take note of constructive feedback. If anyone wishes to hold a position, they must accept criticism, as long as decisions are made in the best interests of national football.”

Hamidin, who is also a Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM) vice-president, was speaking to reporters at OCM’s Hari Raya event in Kuala Lumpur today.

FAM’s elections are scheduled for next year.

Apart from a poison-pen letter criticising FAM’s leadership and management which went viral, the football body has faced heat for the lacklustre performances by the national senior team and national Under-23 team.

Last Friday, Khairy, a the former FAM deputy president, said it was time for FAM to undergo a leadership change to ensure the sport’s  long-term development.

He said that while FAM’s current crop of leaders had done well at the helm of the football body, its management and governance can be further strengthened over the next five to 10 years.

Khairy also downplayed suggestions that he is a suitable candidate to take over from Hamidin, saying he had not thought about returning to FAM as the role requires a high level of commitment.

Last week, Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission chief commissioner Azam Baki said the anti-graft agency was investigating FAM following a poison-pen letter containing numerous allegations.

The poison-pen letter, distributed last month, accused FAM of fraud, abuse of power, mismanagement of funds, discrepancies in salaries and benefits, issues with the Harimau Malaya squad, and the lack of transparency in the tender process for the RM25 million National Training Centre (NTC) in Putrajaya.

MACC is only investigating the NTC, with a source telling Sinar Harian that it had recorded statements from 14 people and inspected 10 premises as part of its investigation.

The source said no irregularities or elements of corruption had been found so far, adding that the investigation was almost complete and the findings would be submitted to MACC’s legal and prosecution division for review. - FMT

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