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KFA Criticize KOWOC

Posted December. 18, 2001 09:21,   


With 165 days ahead of the 2002 World Cup, the Korea Football Association (KFA) urged the Korean Organizing Committee for the 2002 FIFA World Cup (KOWOC) to correct the co-chair system and the problematic operation of the committee.

The KFA pointed out in a press conference after the emergent board meeting at KFA office in Shinmun-Ro, Jongno-Gu, Seoul, yesterday that "despite the fact that the KOWOC should have been organized by the initiative of the KFA that is a contractor and a responsible host, the organizing committee has been operated by co-chair system, by which the KFA has been alienated from the decision-making process of the committee." And it adopted a resolution, urging that such an organizational confusion should be corrected as soon as possible for the successful host of the World Cup.

The resolution of the KFA can be regarded as a shocking event that the KFA directly attacked the organizing committee, in the midst of the recurring criticisms on the inefficiency of the co-chair system of the committee.

On the assumption that "it is the requirement of the FIFA that the football association of the host country should take the responsibility for constructing the organizing committee and controlling the operation of the committee." the KFA asserted in the resolution that "the government responsible for this mess should recast the currently problematic co-chair system at earliest as possible."

And the KFA expressed their disapproval of the committee`s operation, saying "The KOWOC has tried to select the personages outside the soccer circles as the directors for the game management of next year`s World Cup, with the opinions of the KFA excluded."

Experts analyzed that the KFA`s announcement of resolution was regarded as the strong opposition to KOWOC`s co-chairpersons Jung Mong-Joon and Lee Yeon-Taik of the KFA and football circles, rather than a simple conflict between the KFA and the KOWOC on several practical issues.

Vice President of the KFA Kim Sang-Jin said that "It was not the KFA that made the co-chair system. The responsible persons should solve the current problematic situation created by the co-chairperson system." urging indirectly the resignation of Chairperson Lee Yeon-Taik.

Meanwhile, In Byung-Taik, the director of the public information department of the KOWOC, said that "it is hard to say anything decisive for now. I just hope that this conflict will be settled so smoothly that the preparation for the World Cup will proceed without any interruption." And it is known that the Ministry of Culture and Tourism related to this issue plans to make a decision after accurately understanding the complicated situation.