The calculation is based on 23,000 pounds sterling (TT$237,257.06) which Warner will receive for each year he has been a FIFA vice-president, which the British media yesterday put at 28 years. The payments are to be paid yearly until Warner reaches the age of 96.
However, the final figure may be more, since Warner said he has served at FIFA for 30 years.
According to British media reports yesterday, Warner is still entitled to the pension even though he resigned from FIFA on June 17.
In response to those reports, Warner said he has no idea what is the pension he will receive from FIFA, the world governing body of football.
“I honestly don’t know. I have served in FIFA for 30 years. I resigned with all my benefits in tact,” he said. While he neither confirmed nor denied the figures quoted in the British reports, Warner said he expects FIFA will tell him what kind of pension he will receive but he has no desire to find out how much it is at this time.
Warner also dismissed a British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) report that FIFA’s ethics committee has published a document stating he was “an accessory to corruption” in relation to bribery allegations in the failed presidency bid of Mohamed bin Hammam, head of the Asia Football Confederation.
FIFA is investigating claims that bribes were paid to members of the Caribbean Football Union (CFU) during a meeting with bin Hammam at the Hyatt Regency in Port-of-Spain in May. The meeting was arranged by Warner who was suspended by FIFA, along with bin Hammam, pending the outcome of the probe. Warner resigned from FIFA last Friday before the completion of the inquiry. FIFA, in response, said it will not pursue any further probe of Warner, adding his innocence is maintained.
Predicting there will be further “vicious attacks” against him, Warner yesterday said, “I will once again reiterate for the sake of those with hidden agendas I, Jack Warner, did not partake in the distribution of any cash gifts to my members.”
Warner said he understands an anonymous source circulated a document, dated June 17, the same day he stepped down from FIFA, “to selected international media” purporting to be the ethics committee’s decision on the alleged bid-rigging.
Warner said he is further advised that the purported “decision” document was not released by FIFA; nor was its circulation authorised by FIFA.
Warner said it is instructive that “the investigation into these allegations is still ongoing and therefore any suggestion that the report being circulated is the final conclusion of the FIFA ethics committee is both misleading and false.”
He said, in accordance with due process, the ethics committee’s secretariat sent him four copies of the conclusions of the preliminary investigation which took place on May 29.
“I was advised that one copy was sent to me by fax (which copy I am yet to receive), one by courier, DHL, one to my lawyer (Om Lalla), with the fourth being sent to me in care of the Concacaf office in New York,” Warner said.
He said there is no way the copies of the report sent to him or his lawyer “could have been accessed by any scurrilous party bent on malice manifestly intended in the anonymous leaks to the media in an investigation that is still ongoing.”
Warner claimed this is part of an ongoing agenda “to destroy the cohesion which has made the Caribbean Football Union (CFU) a factor to be reckoned with in FIFA affairs.”
“There are those in a section of the FIFA fraternity who, in the face of FIFA’s stated position and its voluntary recognition of my contribution to world football and by definition to FIFA, will stop at no length to destroy my legacy and destabilise the Caribbean region whose interests I have always vigorously advocated.”
Warner declared that neither he nor the Caribbean will tolerate such attacks.The BBC yesterday said, “A FIFA report seen by the Press Association says there is ‘overwhelming evidence’ that Mohamed bin Hammam used bribery in his presidential campaign. The report also claimed that FIFA ethics committee said Warner was ‘an accessory to corruption’.”
The BBC claims the full report of the ethics committee headed by Namibian judge Petrus Damaseb said there was “comprehensive, convincing and overwhelming” proof that bribes had been paid to officials to support bin Hammam’s campaign for the FIFA presidency facilitated by Warner. The 17-page report from the ethics committee, according to the BBC, was faxed to Warner on June 14, three days before his resignation.
In a statement yesterday, the Opposition PNM maintained Warner’s resignation from FIFA is a ruse to give a false impression that he was cleared of all allegations against him “in order to facilitate his continued control and influence in local football and also retain his position in the Cabinet and Government.”
The PNM reiterated its call for Warner to resign as a government minister and for Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar to fire him if he did not.
Persad-Bissessar has expressed her support for Warner from the time of his suspension as FIFA vice-president in May and has not altered that position to date.
TT Football Federation (TTFF) president Oliver Camps said Warner remains the TTFF’s special adviser and he has not been advised otherwise. He said such matters will be discussed when the TTFF holds its executive meetings. The next one is carded for July.
Newsday also learnt yesterday that CFU officials, Trinidadians Jason Sylvester and Debbie Minguell, who were also suspended by the FIFA ethics committee, are still employed with the CFU.