banner ad

Blake’s cloud, CIFA’s shame

| 10/02/2016 | 36 Comments

Cayman News Service101 writes: Entrenched. Stubborn. Dedicated. Confused. We are not sure which of these words best describes Bruce Blake right now. If we are to believe what he wants us to, Blake, the acting president of CIFA, is simply a man dedicated to the development of football in this country, who was not only unaware of the corrupt practices of his colleagues over the past 15 years, but is now shell-shocked to discover the various schemes to defraud Cayman’s youth football of cash.

He didn’t notice anything untoward. He didn’t feel the need to ask more questions. He never participated in a meeting which he now realises was entirely inappropriate. And he always believed that everything done in his circles was compliant with the best practices that he’s fully aware of as a qualified attorney.

Truth is, Blake was in the thick of things. He was there to sign a ‘loan document’ that is now the subject of yet another fraud. He was there when the accounts were discussed and signed off each year. He saw transactions which, given his training and experience, he should have deemed inappropriate at worse or not compliant with best practices at best.

His ‘anger’ at his colleagues won’t purchase rest rooms at the shameful CIFA Centre of Excellence, which stands incomplete. His ‘heart broken’ feelings cannot return the hundreds of thousands of dollars that was stolen from Cayman’s youth. And his disingenuous ‘look of disbelieve’ does nothing to help us recover the funds stolen.

Blake’s most recent revelation that he has been supporting CIFA with his own cash does not provide us with comfort.

In fact, for all its benefit this type of ‘support’ is yet another example of how CIFA’s accounts were shamelessly mismanaged, with money moving seamlessly between the pockets of its executive board members and CIFA’s accounts, with clearly no regard for proper financial control procedures.

The co-mingling of bribery cash, an exec’s own credit card support, funds for construction of facilities, operational funds, alleged money laundering proceeds, hospital deal proceeds and who knows what else should be unthinkable. But that seems to be what occurred at CIFA.

Despite extremely serious allegations and immense reputational damage to CIFA, its executive committee remains firm in their position that no change is necessary to its leadership. Any normal organisation, public or private, would have asked a senior executive member to step down if serious allegations or eyebrow-raising evidence surfaced. But Peter Campbell remains.

Most organisations would have taken the voluntary step of dissolving the entire board by now. They would not wait for the clearly spineless and shamefully apathetic CIFA club members (aside from Academy and Tigers, who were the only ones daring for change) to step up and force an extraordinary meeting. But let’s leave that discussion for another day.

For now, we can see that Blake has walked about 7 miles past the sign that says ‘time to make changes to the CIFA executive for reputational reasons’ . It’s embarrassing that the existing CIFA executive, comprising Bruce Blake, Martha Godet, Mark Campbell, Bruce Sigsworth, Armando Ebanks, Livingston Bailey and Peter Campbell, would all think it’s perfectly appropriate to sit there in the pretense that they are fighting for football or following some type of protocol.

And even with that observation, Blake appears to be asking us to believe that his motive is that he’s trying to ‘hold it all together’ in the midst of a crisis.

Reality check: referees continuing to show late for matches, teams dropping out of the youth league, coaches cursing at referees and youth players, appointment of unqualified coaches to national teams as favours, appointment of unqualified persons to chair a national development committee, girls youth matches beIng postponed for weeks, courses being cancelled, CIFA’s ‘inability’ to deal with club transfer controversies and extremely slow/poor administration of the youth league because you can no longer afford to pay someone to do the job are just a sample of evidence that things are not being ‘held together’.

It’s not the same old CIFA, Mr Blake. It’s considerably worse.

Given the above and the extensive negative reputational issues surrounding CIFA, what then must we make of this ‘burning passion’ being displayed by a man willing to leave his job as an attorney at a local law firm to stay firmly at the midst of all this?

None of this is making sense, Mr Blake. And if you are not going to lead CIFA to do the right thing for reputational reasons as an organization you should at least do something to remove the massive cloud of doubt hanging over your own head.

Tags: , ,

Category: Viewpoint

Comments (36)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. Anonymous says:

    Oh well, surprise, surprise.Anoher CIFA official involved with J Webb and C Watson in plans to create a pharmacy under the Carepay deal. According reports online Mark Campbell XXXXXX was in plans to establish a pharmacy together with JW and CW to take advantage of he fraudalent Carepay deal.
    And still no one resigns!!!!!!




    0



    0
  2. Anonymous says:

    This is the result of 20 years of mismanagement. Today the football fans of Cayman should be talking about the game, the cup finals last night but no, we are talking about football corruption at a level many of us could not imagine. I guarantee many of the people commenting here not even know that the “PRESIDENT CUP” finals were held last night. Does anyone knows the scores? Why is this? CIFA makes no effort or have the ability to promote football locally. When was the last time anyone saw local football information in the mass media. How football is to develop when is treated with contempt by the very people in charged of promoting the same.




    0



    0
  3. Anonymous says:

    Does anyone know if FIFA sanctions prevents Canover from playing football for the Northward Prison Team?




    0



    0
  4. Anonymous says:

    You all need to get hatred out of an minds and love one another as god loves us




    0



    0
    • SSM345 says:

      You need to stop pandering and praying for people who are destroying the reputation of our Country for nothing more than their own personal greed.




      0



      0
    • Anonymous says:

      Love the thief but hate his actions. YCLA, proud of him.




      0



      0
  5. Anonymous says:

    CIFA’s issues did not come about overnight, nor will it change overnight. Before we go about maligning everyone as we love to do, it should be noted that at least two members of the executive (Armando and Bruce) are new. They have nothing to do with what has happened before and both have their reputations intact. Deciding to get involved at the most troubling time took guts because they know too well that they live in a community where we very quick to stomp on the very people who want to make a difference. It really is a shame that the author of the viewpoint failed to make any distinction and instead suggested that they are part and parcel of all that has transpired – perhaps because the full truth doesn’t really make a good story and helps to stir more anger and misinformation. Everyone is now an expert on CIFA and jumping on the bandwagon – including weekend soccer moms. It’s amazing. No ONE club is the answer to the CIFA problem. No ONE coach is the answer to the CIFA problem. The real change will come when the massive egos in Cayman football put side their measuring sticks and work together – not for accolades, but for the betterment of the game, the process, and the youth. In the meantime, be careful about painting everyone with the same brush. It might be a radical idea in our snake infested community but let’s try to support those on the CIFA executive who have stepped up to try to make a difference!!




    0



    0
    • Anonymous says:

      When Armando and Bruce speak out publicly calling for Blake to resign then I will think of them differently and view them as trying to make a difference. If they support the people who helped cause this mess (either directly or through inaction) then I am sad to say they are part of the problem too and do not deserve our support.

      Come on guys. Step Up! The island, and much of the world, is watching.




      0



      0
    • Anonymous says:

      if Armando and B Sigsworth really want to make a difference they have to resign their post and stop supporting the old structure. I believe Armando is the current treasurer, and not sure what Sigsworth position is, however, they should be able to see that this current CIFA Exco must go. If Armando and Sigsworth really want to contribute they will have to join new group of people and run for elections whenever they happen. They should not stay and support a committee that is tainted by 20 years of mismanagement and corruption where the former president and former treasurer are convicted for embezzlement of funds intended for football development and health services.




      0



      0
    • Anonymous says:

      The point you are missing is this. No one is blaming Armando and Bruce Sigsworth for the past. But they are part of the existing committee and we expect them to show us this new blood because we know they are better than the rest. They cannot sit there quietly and not try to influence the situation. When Jeff Webb got arrested lots of people were saying it wasn’t so and that we should pray for him. When Canover got arrested many said it’s all a conspiracy and he will be acquitted until they started to hear of the evidence. Now there are some that are foolish enough to think that the past members of the CIFA exec are innocent until proven guilty and they didn’t know what was going on. Sometimes we need to call it like it looks. Armando and Bruce cannot sit there and say we are not part of the past. They must show us that they are the future and that takes action not sitting by and letting the old boys rule.




      0



      0
    • Anonymous says:

      Not sure I agree with what you are saying. They are part of the exec now so we expect them to act now. They are accountable for the current lack of a response by the exec because they are part of the current exec. Get it???




      0



      0
    • Anonymous says:

      The fact that Armando is your Freind doesn’t mean he should not be accountable as a member of the exec. And no one needs to be an expert on CIFA to see that something is wrong here with how its leadership , including Armando is handling the situation.




      0



      0
    • Anonymous says:

      don’t think anyone is maligning those two guys. I am sure they are good persons there to help. but they are part of the committee so what must we do forget that and give them a pass?




      0



      0
    • Anonymous says:

      Armando and Bruce S are willing to seat on the board with the owner of Black Enterprise whose conflict of interest was clearly shown during the CAREPAY case? If that is the case them I do not see what difference they bring to the table.




      0



      0
    • Anonymous says:

      Those on the executive that do not support Blake should resign asap, like Paul Macey did

      Even more important for those appointed by Blake directly rather than voted in.

      Otherwise they will, of course, be seen to be supporting him.

      If they resign and call for his resignation, perhaps there will still be a place for them in a new regime – which is coming……




      0



      0
  6. Anonymous says:

    Bruce where there is smoke there is surely fire!

    Please do us all a favor and resign immediately. Your credibility is shot. We the public do not believe you! You are both a qualified Accountant and an Attorney, and should have asked the necessary questions, even if you are incompetent in both of them!




    0



    0
  7. Ronnie says:

    Folks remember up until last week Canover thought that he was not guilty of robbing the Cayman Islands government, the people and the youth. You see when you believe you are above the law and not a commoner, you are actually trained to believe wrong is actually right. Ironically $250,000 was misappropriated, the guy confessed and have we seen any arrests, any confiscation of assets, surrender of passports? These guys can wake up tomorrow, catch a flight and disappear forever.




    0



    0
    • Anonymous says:

      trust me. members of the executive believed that Canover would get off scott free. They are truly as you say up in the clouds. saw the jeff webb party photos, its unreal dude.




      0



      0
    • Anonymous says:

      Conover knew he was a thief. He just thought he might get away with it.




      0



      0
  8. Anonymous says:

    Afraid, is a word you can use about BB current status. He must realized the sympathy card has been already played, it is a losing card ( 7 years at HMNWP). I am very surprised to Armando Ebanks and Bruce Sigsworh are exposing their reputation with this bunch, these two are new to the board. Not much surprised about the remaining members, they have been there for years and have enjoyed some of the benefits of being loyal to JW. Who knows some of them may be deeper than we expect.




    0



    0
    • Anonymous says:

      They are the good guys and have nothing to do with the past stuff. But I would have expected them both to bring a new approach and convince the rest of the board to do the right thing. What’s very disappointing to see is that they are both just sitting there knowing full well that the execs stance is unreasonable. Maybe they are just pawns.




      0



      0
      • Anonymous says:

        They are propping up Bruce and therefore supporting the BS excuses being made by somebody who signed numerous contracts on behalf of CIFA.

        If the do not support Blake they should resign now




        0



        0
        • Anonymous says:

          Alas, birds of a feather flock together and don’t forget Bruce Sig is also Jamaican

          and as long as he supports Blake as head of CIFA I will reserve judgment re his views on this mess, even though I always found him Bruce Sigs to be personable guy.




          0



          0
          • Anonymous says:

            Oh the racism! Webb is? Canover is? Oh yes, Caymanian. But you just got to go blame a Jamaican because he is a Jamaican. Blind leading the blind




            0



            0
      • Anonymous says:

        Great that you recognize they are actually good people. Any idea how long they have been on the board? Any idea what positions they have taken on issues? Both are working hard to make a difference but these issues weren’t created yesterday.




        0



        0
        • Anonymous says:

          10:10, I assume you are also 10:07. Not sure why you are so worked up on proving that these two new guys have done great things in meetings but the article is not actually about them (until you tried to make it so with these comments!). Think of the bigger issue the article is trying to raise regarding CIFA’s unwillingness to make the changes under the very obvious circumstances. That’s the point that cannot be denied. The fact that they are named as part of the CIFA Exec is just a fact of life. Deal with it and move on with your PR machinery…..




          0



          0
  9. Anonymous says:

    The house of cards is about to fall. Only a stubborn fool doesn’t see that coming. Each member of the exec named above should be ashamed of themselves.




    0



    0
    • Anonymous says:

      When Bodden Town supporters requested financial statements from their President Mark Scotland (president for about 18 years – self appointed by the way) about two years ago Mark had a hissy fit and asked if they think he stealing the money. Nobody accuse him of stealing but they just wanted accountability because its the supporters who dip in their pockets and the supporters who help with fund raising so they have a right to know how good or how bad the club financial position is. Yet up to today I dont think anyone has seen the financials of the club. The government gave Bodden Town Club two grants in one year and still the club could not afford to feed the boys on a trip to Cayman Brac to play for the club that same year. So CIFA turn a blind eye so the clubs doing the same as CIFA. No accountability anywhere.




      0



      0
      • Anonymous says:

        The teams are no better then CIFA, I was told that [one club] use their sponsor money to pay personal water n light bills…..




        0



        0
  10. #COLDHARDTRUTH says:

    The full board and all legacy Jeff Webb appointments must resign. If they truly love the sport and have the best interests of Cayman at heart.

    The voting members of CIFA must call for an ExtraOrdinary Annual General Meeting immediately and stop selling out or indirectly condoning the misappropriation of public and sponsors funds.

    If CIFA Executive Committee will not do the right thing the current CI Government must strip CIFA of it’s not for profit status immediately.

    RCIPS must investigate, arrest and charge appropriately all Executive Members past and present for their roles in the various offenses to prove that no one is above the law be that Bruce Blake, Jeff Webb, Canover Watson or any others who aided them over the past two decades.




    0



    0
  11. Anonymous says:

    CIFA management is wriggling on the hook. They can’t step down because they know what a new management team would discover but they know they can’t keep this game up for much longer either. I bet the only hard work they’re doing at the moment involves the shredding machine and “delete” button.




    0



    0
  12. Anonymous says:

    I heard that there are several other investigations going on. I can’t see CIFA lasting much longer like this. If I was a member of the current board I would have resigned about 3 weeks ago…




    0



    0
  13. Anonymous says:

    spot on. why am i not surprised that the local football clubs are not putting any pressure on cifa? must be Cayman Kind..




    0



    0
  14. Anonymous says:

    pow!




    0



    0

Please include your email address in the form below if you are using your real name. You can use a pseudonym, with or without leaving an email address, or just leave the form blank to be "Anonymous". All comments will be moderated before they are published. Please read the CNS Comment Policy at the top of this page.