Friday, December 11, 2009

MHF Committees in "Slumberland" - Part 5: "Pointless" Team Management Committee.

Team Management Committee (TMC) of MHF is not a constitutionally designated Committee. It was set up in the past probably one and the half or 2 decades ago to ensure that matters pertaining to the various national teams are under a jurisdiction of a Committee. This is how the TMC derived its name.

While that provided a sound reason but people involved in that era tell a "story" that it was done for political purposes. Apparently a very senior office bearer in MHF felt that he was "cut off" from the day to day matters relating to the national teams and that the other Committees or personalities may have greater access including directly to the President, therefore he pushed for the TMC. Because of his seniority it fell on his lap to Chair, fulling the original intended objective. This way he became the main person reporting to the President and accessibility to the President for others were totally minimised or eliminated.

From then on, everyone involved with the national teams had to "pay their respect" to this person. On a day to day basis he became the "kingpin" of Malaysian hockey, having the administrative and operative control. If the story is a fact, the person must have been a genius in "maneuvering and manipulating" matters without others realising or even if they did, they could not do anything about it. The story concludes with the bottom line that "everything in MHF got going if he felt it deserved the attention and provided it was good for hockey". Therefore in a nutshell, it was not "bad" overall because things got going.

This precedent of having the TMC continued by other administrations of MHF even when the so called "founder" of it left MHF. The TMC brought a fair share of "ups and downs". This time there were more "downs" and slowly the purpose of the existence of the TMC became a glaring question?

In the current administration the TMC is being chaired by the Deputy President and he had selected the TMC's members including a senior officer of NSC to represent them. At its first meeting the TMC decided to name the coaches and team manager's of the senior national team, the junior national team and the national age group team (now it is referred to as the Project 2013 team). All these selections were done without discussing with the Coaching Committee or other relevant parties. The matter seemed to have a sinister flavour when certain people within the TMC were some of the named officials.

The matter got out of hand when the Chairman of the TMC made the appointments public even without informing the President of MHF. The matter became the "talk of the hockey community", when certain people in the TMC and some of the appointed officials seemed to originate from Malacca. Thus the group controlling or having influence on the TMC is referred to as the "Malacca Mafia". This effectively gave rise to the issue on the continuance of the past administration habit of "cronyism", thereby overlooking the fundamentals of meritocracy.

The manner of appointments by the TMC set the "tails wagging" and the main victim of it was the Chairman of the Coaching Committee. His Committee as result of this became " war torn." Accusations were flying around how friends were rewarded with appointments, more so overlooking the fundamental of ethics and conflict of interest. The "hodge podge" approach by the TMC gave a feeling that the whole thing was done in a hurry before the formal matters are considered. Maybe they were fearful that with time they may not be able to achieve their desired objective.

On the meantime, they got away with their first act. Then informally the Chairman of the TMC and the NSC Officer started exercising their powers. They summoned the coaches of the senior team and wanted them to go through their team manager on any statements or communications with any parties. This unusual approach seem to be a "vetting" process and wanting to strength the position of the team manager. Part of the reason was the coaches used to provide independent reports to the President of MHF and NSC. This the "Malacca Mafia" felt uncomfortable and if the reports were vetted then they would have an advance warning, which would give them time to react accordingly. Indeed the Chairman of the TMC was making life difficult for the senior team coaches.

With the passage of time, as more issues developed particularly of disciplinary nature with the national team, the TMC decided "to put its tail between its legs" and walk away from the problems. The TMC did not even "wink an eye" on the matter. Suddenly the TMC "lost its tooth" and became speechless. The purpose of their existence seem to have suddenly disappeared. Some believe that the Chairman of the TMC was slowly being caught out and he does want to display his true colour.

Lately, the Deputy President must have decided that his silence must be "broken". He found a topic that he felt was probably under his jurisdiction as Chairman of TMC and that is the foreign coach for Malaysia. Not realising the rules of confidentiality and breaching the understandings agreed upon, the Deputy President freely made information publicly available. This in a way gave the impression that the TMC is still in-charge of such matters. Some of course believe his actions may be calculated to sabotage the appointment of the foreign coach. The debate on this matter would continue for years to come.

All these raise the fundamental issue of whether there is the need for a TMC? Even if it does , should it not have a scope clearly defined as to what the TMC's functions are and the procedures they must adopt including seeking the endorsement of the Management Committee on certin matters. The TMC should not be seen as an independent unit wanting to do what they like based on their "whims and fancies". Ultimately the President of MHF is responsible and they must know that they cannot usurp his authority.


Anonymous said...

Pease pudding hot, pease pudding cold,
Pease pudding in the pot - nine days old.

Some like it hot, some like it cold,
Some like it in the pot - SAVED LIKE GOLD

mahatma said...

All said and done, I believe the MHF association has played a key role to the success of hockey in Malaysia.

Just get the right people doing the job and the Pointless Team management committee becomes "meaningful" eventhough it is not anywhere in the constitutionally set up.

The vital person for the growth and success of all the committee set ups is the PRESIDENT himself. Anyone can run the hockey association but the president takes the hit and answers to the malaysians and to the world about the success or failure of the sports in Malaysia. Not the medical committee, not the TMC, not the coaching committee but the president himself.

The president who has much expertise and respect in the world of sports must be saluted not because of his position but his sincere majestic desires to bring changes and success to the hockey world. Changes is vital for the organisation to grow. The sooner the better as we have less than 300days for asian cup and olympic qualifier and less than 1500 days for the JWC.

If Raja Azlan Shah have been able to do so in the 80's and 90's, I believe that our current president has all the charisma, talent, power, credibility, leadership and willpower to bring Hockey to the next level in Malaysia,

Being the president, he shall have his veto power to overide certain decisons made by certain committee if deemed not right for the progress of hockey and this has to be abide by all in MHF.

Dear President, Don't be a toothless lion. the future of Hockey lies in your hand. As the right or whatever wrong decisions made by you will see the success or failure of hockey in Malaysia.