PHF Executive Board replaces chief election commissioner Featured

Tuesday, 15 October 2013 16:38

In a surprising move, the Pakistan Hockey Federation (PHF) Executive Board on Monday changed the chief election commissioner (CEC) for the coming elections.

The Board last month had appointed Federal Information Minister Pervaiz Rashid as the CEC for conducting the PHF elections scheduled to be held from Oct 25 to Nov 25 from district to national level.

However, on Monday the PHF Board during its meeting held here replaced Pervaiz with Arshad Ansari, who is president of the Lahore Press Club.

Later, PHF secretary Rana Mujahid while defending the decision of the change said it had been taken to avoid any action from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) or the International Hockey Federation (FIH), as both the bodies might have considered Pervaiz’s appointment as government interference in PHF affairs.

Sources, however, said the FIH had directed the PHF to replace the government dignitary as the CEC otherwise it might ban it, as the PHF replaced the CEC.

But when reminded that since the IOC recognised retired Lt Gen Arif Hasan-led POA as the legitimate sports governing body in Pakistan, and which had imposed a ten-year ban on him (Rana Mujahid) for his working with government-backed POA of Akram Sahi in the past, he could not give any satisfactory reply, only saying he did not accept Arif-headed body as genuine.

It may be mentioned here that the PHF may find itself in an ugly situation since the IOC on Dec 1 this year is set to decide genuine national sports governing body in Pakistan. And if Arif-led POA is declared as the genuine body, it will be binding for all sports federations, including the PHF, to recognise Arif as POA chief.

And if Mujahid maintains his stand (of not accepting Arif’s POA), the stance may leave the PHF in trouble.

Meanwhile, to a question, Arshad said though he had a cordial association with incumbent PHF officials, he would carry out his the elections-related duties in a fair and transparent manner.

The CEC also appointed coordinators who will conduct elections of the provincial hockey associations. Olympian Nasir Ali (Punjab), Syed Latafat Shah (Sindh), Olympian Mohammad Akhlaq (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa), Raheela Durrani (Balochistan), retired Lt Col Nadeem Ahmed Bhatti (Gilgit-Baltistan), retired Lt Col Nadeem Ahmed Bhatti (AJK), Olympian Mohammad Akhlaq (Fata) and Olympian Muhammad Usman (Islamabad) were named coordinators for different provinces and regions.

The CEC also announced the elections schedule, which is as follows:

District level:

Punjab: Oct 25 to Nov 15; Khyber Pakhtunkhwa: Nov 4 to 15; Sindh: Nov 5 to 15; Balochistan: Nov 8 to 15; Gilgit-Baltistan: Nov 13; AJK: Nov 13-14; Fata: Nov 5-6; Islamabad: Nov 12.

Elections of provincial hockey associations:

Nov 16 to 20.

Elections of PHF: Nov 21 to 25.

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