It has been a story that has stole the limelight away from focusing on actions on the pitch and once again depressing off-field matters have blighted Malaysian football. Perlis Football Association (PFA) are in dire straits after they were thrown out of the 2019 Malaysia Premier League following their catastrophic failure to meet the financial demands of running the team.
The mismanagement of it all stemmed from the appointment of Ahmad Amizal Shaifit as the president of PFA and the subsequent dereliction of duty to have a check and balance of the financial state of the team. Players were offered the massive carrot of huge salaries to tempt them to the second division and they are all now left regretting accepting the offers.
Malaysian Football League (MFL) have done their part in weeding out unwanted entity and now it's the turn of the Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) to take the same stern direction and enforce changes to their system to prevent the repeat of the tragedy.
Goal met with the general-secretary of FAM, Stuart Ramalingam and can exclusively reveal that planning is already in progress to find the right remedy to not only solve this problem but to also find the right prevention to secure the future of Malaysian football from the same fate.
"As the governing body of the football in Malaysia, our concern is over football across Perlis rather than the concern of one man," Stuart told Goal. "A lot of people have asked if we should take action on Perlis FA and at this moment, the position of FAM is to assist Perlis football to get out of the position they are in rather than focusing on taking action on the reported mismanagement, of which we do not have a final decision yet.
"Separately, whatever has happened in Perlis has allowed us to look at the scenarios of our affiliates differently. I've seen AFC go through it in recent times. We've seen FIFA go through it in recent times where turmoils have allowed the organisation to improve in their SOPs, their policies, their governing structure and their fit and proper test.
"Here I believe that from FAM, we can relook at how we are as the governing body of national football but also how we govern the affiliates. We go through that same due process as a national body with FIFA and AFC, and I believe it's a similar obligation and responsibility we have to put down to our affiliates."
Back in 1995, a court ruling effectively produced the 'Bosman Ruling' which helped players at the end of their contracts in moving to the next club and a similar transformative ruling could be introduced by FAM in response to this entire Perlis episode.
In the past, presidents or any executive committee members are not held responsible for their actions the moment the leave the team or association. The problem has always remained solely with the association rather than the individuals responsible and that is a scenario that is likely to be amended in the near future.
"Not long ago we already reported that we're seeking AFC's assistance to relook into our statutes, disciplinary codes and all that. And this is another thing that we can put into our requirements and assistance that we get out of AFC. The fit and proper test is one way to allow us to weed out individuals that shouldn't be in football but I don't it's the only solution.
"The solution that we need to look at as a governing body is responsiblity of the decision made. Mismanagement can be made by any type of individual and as the governing body we should work towards ensuring that our affiliates and the people in power during the time that they are in power, are all responsible for the decisions made during that term.
"So hopefully with these improvements gained from this experience and insights, we'll be able to guide national football in the right direction to make sure something like this doesn't happen again," explained Stuart.
For far too long, the individuals have all allowed to wash their hands clean just by abdicating their positions within the football fraternity but soon that may no longer be the case. They have to be held accountable for their actions and the right reforms from FAM will make these individuals think twice before stepping into the sport again.
Follow Goal Malaysia on Instagram