JFF, MOH in key meeting today to discuss Premier LeagueTuesday, October 20, 2020
The Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) and the Ministry of Health and Wellness (MOHW) will convene today in a key meeting of stakeholders regarding the resumption of the Premier League.
The JFF announced a proposed date for the resumption of the league a few weeks ago at a press conference held at Jamaica Pegasus hotel, but since then things appeared in limbo as there has been no confirmation from the MOHW about the protocols put forward by the federation.
The 12 participating clubs have already begun preparations for the start of the league, which was originally set for November 14, but most have been doing so on a limited contact basis as they await word from the JFF and the MOHW.
President of the JFF Michael Ricketts will lead the delegation that will meet with the MOHW today and is hopeful of a positive outcome.
“We have a meeting scheduled for 11 o'clock with Minister Tufton's office. We have a submitted a document to Minister Grange's office and his office, so both parties are very integral to the restart. So, we will be meeting with the Ministry of Health and we will be meeting with the Ministry of Sport later on to ensure that there is this alliance, this synergy amongst all parties as we try to restart the premier league,.” said Ricketts
“We have prepared a protocol document…it was sent to both Minister Grange's office and Dr [Christopher] Tufton's office. The key persons in both these ministries would have looked at the document and hopefully, we will get a definitive response,” the JFF boss added.
Ricketts said that with all the challenges being faced at this time, he was still hopeful of a positive response.
“I am hopeful, bearing in mind taking care of our athletes is paramount, and not just our athletes…so, we would have prepared a document with that in mind so it is important to us how we manage the risk because certainly, it will be a risk managing the start of the league.
“So, we just want to ensure that we maintain whatever protocols that would have been put in place and hopefully, that we will have a start and a successful completion of the league,” he said.
Based on all that would need to be put in place for the resumption of football including testing of players, club officials and all other persons involved in the administration of the league, the proposed start date seems unlikely. Ricketts, however, suggested an alternative start date should the November date prove unlikely.
“There were two suggested dates, the 14th of November and the 6th of December. If we can't make a 14th of November start it will be the 6th of December, but this will be dependent on the readiness of the participating teams,” Ricketts noted.
All stakeholders will now anxiously await positive news from the outcome of the meeting with the MOHW so that football can resume on the island.
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