ALOR SETAR – Kedah Ex-Footballers Association (KEFA) has urged the Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) to pardon the 216 involved in the bribery scandal that rocked Malaysian football in 1994.
KEFA president Faridzul Kassim said lifting the ban and offering them pardon would enable the ex-players to return to the football arena and offer their services to the respective states or clubs.
Faridzul said many among the banned players are vastly talented and since many had repented and regretted their actions, they can still contribute to the development in the country by identifying or grooming talent available at their respective locations.
Based on their previous ‘alleged’ involvement, they can also assist the FAM in combatting match fixing and bribery in football.
“The FAM can appoint them as Match Inspectors to monitor the progress of the matches and identify if there were any elements of match fixing or bribery involved,” he told reporters at the Darul Aman Stadium, yesterday.
Faridzul said KEFA through the Ex-National Athletes Foundation (YAKEB) had made an appeal to the FAM in 2011 but the appeal was rejected without any reason.
The former Kedah and Kuala Lumpur player said the FAM need to study the punishment that was meted out 22 years ago to ease the sufferings of many former footballers who have not been able to secure permanent jobs.
“The FAM must study why they were involved in bribery or march fixing… maybe they were not paid their salary on time by their respective states or clubs. Therefore, the FAM need to know the motive for such action.
“There are some who were alleged to have been involved in the match fixing and bribery scandal during that era but have become coaches now because they were not banned for life…at least they can continue their career.
“Some players are also not happy with the punishment meted out by the FAM because their contributions and sacrifices were forgotten,” he said.
Faridzul said six Kedah players were banned for life during the 1994 episode. – BERNAMA