FAS' REPLY TO MEDIA QUERY REGARDING TIONG BAHRU FC'S DONATION TO AFF AND FAS' INVOLVEMENT IN THE MATTER
On Tiong Bahru FC’s donation to AFF
"FAS did not oversee the $500,000 donation from Tiong Bahru to AFF. The FAS acceded to the request of Tiong Bahru FC to help facilitate the donation to AFF and this was the extent of FAS' involvement. At no time did FAS donate to the AFF, and this was also the only donation made to AFF through FAS. It was made very clear to AFF that this was a donation from Tiong Bahru FC, not FAS.
"FIFA Connect and AFF Football Management System are two different management portals. FIFA Connect is a database management system which supports FIFA Member Associations, including FAS, in registering our stakeholders in a systematic way. This online portal was launched by FAS in 2015, and the full details of our players and other football stakeholders were registered during the first few phases of the programme. Among other benefits, the programme has enabled us to establish a central paperless platform for the issuance of player passports, which streamlines processes and also leads to enhanced efficiency and convenience for our stakeholders.
"The AFF Football Management System, on the other hand, is a different online resource management portal that was conceived by the AFF with the key goal of raising the capabilities and capacities of the Member Associations (MAs) and Clubs in various aspects of football management – including but not limited to sponsorship management, information technology, communications, corporate governance, human asset management, risk management and coach education. One of the benefits of this portal will be capability and capacity development – with insightful, professional and quality football management solutions which will enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of MAs and Clubs in this region including Singapore.
"FAS is registered as an Institution of Public Character (IPC), defined by the Commissioner of Charities.
"The $500,000 donation from Tiong Bahru FC to AFF is not a qualifying donation for tax purposes. Hence FAS has complied with Singapore tax regulations and did not issue any tax deductible receipt to Tiong Bahru FC for this said donation."
- FAS spokesman
On FAS’ involvement in Tiong Bahru FC’s donation
"It is not unusual for the President to seek sponsorships and donations from other parties for projects that he has assessed would be beneficial for Singapore football.
"FAS has never donated to the AFF, including this transaction. This was solely a donation from Tiong Bahru FC to AFF.
"As to whether the funds could have been better channelled for local footballing activities, that question should be directed at the donor who made the decision to donate the sum of money.
"Donations are voluntary, and donors usually contribute to a cause they support and believe in.
"It is clear that the amount of $500,000 was never meant to be donated to the FAS or any Singapore footballing activity. This was not a case of FAS accepting a donation and thereafter channeling the amount to AFF instead of using it for local football.
"We would like to categorically state that any claim of Tiong Bahru FC and/or Hougang United having donated $850,000 to FAS is inaccurate.
"As pointed out earlier, Tiong Bahru FC had donated $500,000 to the AFF, and not to the FAS or any Singapore footballing activity. In addition, the donation of $200,000 to the LionsXII (for the 2012 campaign) came from a company whom Mr Ng had introduced to FAS and not from him directly.
"He had supported the FAS through the Charity Golf Day and other events which raised approximately $15,000.
"We are transparent in our processes and dealings with our stakeholders, and all donations and sponsorships from our partners are recorded and accounted for.
"In the interest of transparency, Mr Ng ought to show audited accounts that he and/or his clubs had donated $850,000 to the FAS over the past few years. The FAS is prepared to show our audited accounts as soon as Mr Ng can verify his claim."
- FAS spokesman