There has been a series of disinformation in public circulation related to FABD, specifically regarding the state of affairs of football activities in Brunei Darussalam.
Reference is made to the articles as distributed in the local papers, Borneo Bulletin and Media Permata, on 16th September 2023 titled FABD submits appeal for conditional fund to FIFA and FIFA tahan bantuan tranche ke-2 FIFA Forward 3.0 FABD respectively.
FABD would like to make clear that such publications were not, at any material time, authorised or verified by FABD. FABD was never approached by the press and no official announcement on the matters as described in newsprint was made by FABD or its representatives.
For clarification, the “meeting at the Lecture Theatre of the FABD House [on 14th September 2023]” was a closed-door conference with members of FABD to discuss the status of the Brunei Super League (BSL) and Brunei Futsal League (BFL). Due to insufficient funds, by no means the result of alleged sanctions by Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) as implied in the reporting of Borneo Bulletin and Media Permata, FABD has come to the difficult decision of prematurely halting the current 2023/2024 BSL season prior to its conclusion February 2024 whilst BFL shall play to a finish by this coming November. Both leagues will resume its 2024/2025 season as per schedule next year. This decision followed the consultation and request from participating clubs.
In respect of the Brunei Youth League (BYL), FABD places great importance in the players’ academic pursuits. That said, the BYL has been adjourned until early 2024, as per norms, to allow players to focus on their studies throughout the examination period and rest thereafter during their school holidays.
Regrettably, the lack of funds also means that FABD is unable to support Brunei’s participation on the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Futsal Qualifying Round 2023, and have no choice but to withdraw from the championship. Nevertheless, preparations for the upcoming Round 1 Preliminary Joint Qualification match for the FIFA World Cup 2026 and AFC Asian Cup 2027 between Brunei Darussalam and Indonesia are still in the pipeline.
FABD would like to further clarify that its accounts undergo a rigorous examination of its books by independent chartered auditors, both external and internal, followed by a physical checking of inventory to ascertain adherence of financial practices to regulatory guidelines. Additionally, FABD submits to an annual central audit review as required by FIFA. FABD strives to conduct itself with full transparency, in line with the International Financial Report Standards (IFRS) and the Brunei Darussalam Accounting Standards (BDAS). It is unfortunate that due to domestic differences, in particular arising from self-serving actions of certain individuals within the organisation, the Statutory Audit Report for the previous fiscal year, which showed no discrepancies or material misstatement whatsoever, failed to attain the majority votes to be endorsed by stakeholders during last May’s Congress. The Statutory Audit Report will be presented again at the Congress in November for approval.
FABD is also aware of messages being disseminated via text messaging services and social media platforms claiming rife financial mismanagement, purportedly under FABD administration and executive board.
Such accusations give the false impression that FABD has been operating illegitimately. This is NOT TRUE. FABD confirms that its operations are always in full compliance with the laws of Brunei Darussalam as well as the statutory requirements of FIFA, the AFC, and the AFF. FABD urges the recipients and readers of viral messages not to respond or share the messages as they contain unsubstantiated and misleading information from sources with doubtful credibility and personal agendas which may cause public inconvenience, annoyance, or alarm.
FABD also advises members of the community to refrain from speculating and/or spreading unfounded rumours. Without prejudice to FABD’s rights and remedies, the organisation will not hesitate to take immediate remedial action against any party for communicating statements that may amount to libel, slander, and/or defamation.
For more details, FABD may be contacted directly.
Pengiran Matusin Pengiran Matasan
President, Football Association of Brunei Darussalam