TUNKU Ismail Sultan Ibrahim is set to challenge the intended smooth father-and-son transition in the FA of Malaysia's (FAM) congress-cum-elections on May 26.The Johor prince, along with incumbent FAM president Sultan Ahmad Shah and his son, Tengku Abdullah have been nominated for the top post as nominations closed yesterday.
Sultan Ahmad Shah, who has been president since 1984, is said to be keen to step down but will only do so if deputy president Tengku Abdullah replaces him.
However, Tunku Ismail's emergence as a challenger may disorientate the transition if the Johor FA president accepts his nomination.
It is learnt that Sultan Ahmad Shah, also the president of the Asean Football Federation, had initially planned to stay for another four-year term but is now having second thoughts.
He is believed to be upset with some fans who want him to resign over the national team's poor recent form and also due to health concerns.
Tunku Ismail is said to be interested in contesting based on a recent Facebook posting by FAM's suspended deputy president Tan Sri Annuar Musa, who claimed Tunku Ismail feels he is ready to helm the national body.
"Tunku Ismail is going for broke as several affiliates want a change in leadership.
"Sultan Ahmad Shah has done a lot and his contributions will not be forgotten, but some states are unhappy," said a source yesterday.
The final list of candidates will be announced on April 19.
"I doubt it will be a three-way battle for the top post. Things could change in the next few weeks. I believe some will drop out from the race for the various positions," the source added.
FAM's media committee chairman Datuk Seri Subahan Kamal and local competitions chairman Datuk Seri Afandi Hamzah along with incumbent Tengku Abdullah are among those nominated for the two deputy president posts.
Selangor FA treasurer Datuk S. Sivasundaram and former assistant general secretary Datuk Ahmad Fuad Daud are among those who have received nominations for the four vice-president posts.
- New Straits Times