The global leader of football is headed to the Cayman Islands for what local administrators hope is the final step in regaining necessary funding.
Cayman 27 can confirm FIFA President Gianni Infantino and CONCACAF President Victor Montagliani will be arriving in Cayman Friday (9 August) for what Cayman Islands Football Association (CIFA) President Alfredo Whittaker is calling a ‘spot check’ on the Association’s progress over the past year.
The group will also include FIFA General Secretary Mattias Grafstrom, CONCACAF Chief Officer of Member Associations Marco Leaf, FIFA Caribbean Director of Member Associations Veron Mosengo-Omba, and FIFA Caribbean Regional Development Manager Marlon Glean.
“They will only be here for four or five hours,” said Whittaker. “We will be reviewing the CIFA developmental plans, showing them what we have done, what is taking place, what we have planned for the future, and our strategic plans.”
CIFA has been without financial support for three years, dating back to the arrest of former CIFA President Jeffrey Webb. The Cayman Islands Government has also omitted CIFA from any funding in its budget for the past three years, leaving the Association to solicit all money from local stakeholders.
However, international football administrators have warmed to Cayman over the past year.
In April 2018, FIFA held its annual Governance Seminar on island, and officials recognized the Association’s strides.
Speaking at March’s CONCACAF Leadership Conference in Cayman, President Victor Montagliani stood firmly behind Whittaker and endorsed the work that the Association has done in his two-plus year tenure.
Whittaker said a two-year financial audit completed by Grant Thornton was also said to have influenced FIFA’s decision to consider resuming funding.
Based on the FIFA Forward Programme – and a final blessing from Infantino – member association’s such as CIFA are in line for up to USD $6,000,000.
Earlier in the year, Whittaker said administrative hurdles such as a lack of committees accounting for Ethics, Finance, Compliance and Women’s Football held the association back from receiving funding sooner.