Post on K Kannan caused 'unfair negative reactions': FAS

·Assistant News Editor
·3-min read
Football Association of Singapore logo. (SCREENSHOT: FAS/Facebook)
Football Association of Singapore logo. (SCREENSHOT: FAS/Facebook)

SINGAPORE —A Facebook post claiming that ex-national footballer K Kannan received a warning letter from the Football Association of Singapore (FAS) after being spotted playing social football gave the "incorrect impression" to the public, said the FAS on Thursday (19 August).

The post by businessman Jose Raymond has therefore led to "unfair negative reactions" against the Association, said an FAS spokesperson. The spokesperson noted that Raymond had also chosen to attach an image of only the last two paragraphs of the FAS letter.

Convicted of corruption, Kannan is banned for life from participating in all football activities.

Quoting from its letter to Kannan on 12 August 2020, the FAS stressed that the reminder had been sent because Kannan was found to be involved in football management and football activities (including as a player) at the Indian Association Singapore (IA) following a complaint. 

Kannan, 59, was allegedly involved in promoting football, in the running of football activities and in the organisation of various tournaments at the IA. He was also said to have been involved as a referee during these tournaments.

"This is in clear violation of the ban from all football activities that was imposed on K Kannan," said the spokesperson, adding that, due to the complaint, it was incumbent on the FAS Council to write to Kannan to remind him of the conditions of his ban.

The FAS did not release a full copy of the letter sent to Kannan, nor did it address the claim that Kannan is banned from even playing social football. 

The letter to Kannan, which was seen by Yahoo News Singapore, was signed by FAS president Lim Kia Tong. Lim alluded to Kannan's May 2000 appeal against his ban, where the ex-footballer had said, "Because of my suspension, I am not even allowed to play in social matches". 

"You were and are fully aware that your life ban was a life ban from all football related activities," noted Lim. "You are not to partake in any football related activities either directly or indirectly."

Fifth appeal against ban

Yahoo News Singapore reported on Tuesday that Kannan is appealing for the fifth time for his ban to be lifted, which was imposed in 1995 after he was convicted of conspiring with two other men to offer $80,000 to then-national goalkeeper David Lee to concede a goal in a Malaysia Cup match.

He corruptly received $5,000 as a reward for arranging the bribe, even though he and his co-conspirators did not approach Lee. Following his conviction, the father of three was permanently suspended from all football activities.

An appeal letter written by Eugene Thuraisingam and Chooi Jing Yen was sent to the FAS last Friday. It argues that Kannan's involvement with the IA does not contravene the permanent suspension, as IA is not an affiliate member of the FAS.

In its statement on Thursday, FAS acknowledged that it has received the appeal and would only comment when an official decision has been made by the current FAS Council upon completion of the due legal process.

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