Daughter of Goa Football Association (GFA) President Churchill Alemao, Valanka's, election as member of the Executive Committee of All India Football Federation (AIFF) has come in for sharp criticism with some football clubs in Goa crying of nepotism and lamenting over the manner the EC members of GFA have allowed matters come to pass.
Twenty-three club members from the 184 affiliated with GFA called for a press conference on Saturday to address the issue. From the 23, Levinio Pereira of Clube Sao Minguel de Taleigao was the most vocal.
“Football will never progress if the clubs are deliberately being sidelined. The clubs are the veins of any state association and by keeping them out, GFA is just trying to kill football,” Levinio told Gomantak Times after the press briefing.
Levinio Pereira, Clube Sao Minguel de Taleigao
The term of the Executive Committee of GFA ended on July 31 after the Annual General Body Meeting (AGM). However, no elections have been held and Churchill Alemao has continued beyond his tenure with no signs of fresh elections.
“AIFF was in a mess because Praful Patel tried to hold on. Now here in Goa, Churchill is trying to hold on claiming that there is a case in court. It is sad that there appears to be no one in the Executive Committee capable of highlighting these wrongdoings in GFA,” claimed Levinio.
“I was forcing some EC members to take a press conference but they refused to do so and that is why we clubs got together and held the press conference,” disclosed Levinio who is also the head coach of Salgaocar Football Club and a player of repute during his playing days.
Adlear D’Cruz, member of the Executive Committee and former General Secretary of GFA
“Churchill has been doing things on the quiet and keeping just a few executive members in the know. We were neither informed during the AGM that Valanka would be representing Goa nor were told in the EC meeting on September 1 that she would be standing for elections. Her roadmap was not disclosed to us but a few members were called for lunch and asked to sign their support for her,” explained Adlear D’Cruz, member of the Executive Committee and former General Secretary of GFA.
However, Churchill rose in defense of his daughter, by saying, “Thirty-six members of the Electoral College voted for Valanka. We should be happy and proud that she has made it to the Executive Committee of AIFF. These people who are talking now seem to be spirits who have got up from some dream."
Elections to GFA are normally announced four months before the last AGM. However, when Churchill was asked during the AGM as to why no elections were called for, he explained saying “elections are being deferred as a case is being heard in court and it was best to wait for the verdict.
As per AIFF election norms, the President or Secretary of an association is entitled to nominate a representative for the elections. Valanka Alemao got the nod.
Prior to Supreme Court disbanding the Committee of Administrators (CoA) appointed by it, Valanka Alemao had filed applications for the post of president, treasurer and executive committee member.
Based on a complaint filed by GFA Executive Committee member Jonathan D’Souza, her nomination for the post of president was rejected on the contention that the signature of her nominee was forged.
However, on August 22, the Supreme Court terminated the mandate of CoA and fresh elections were called. This time, Valanka filed her nomination for the post of Executive Committee member and like the other 13 was elected unopposed.