Thai FA election - Worawi Makudi to face a challenger

Thai Association News

Pichet Mankong
Thananuwat Srirasant

During the coming weeks the regular presidential election of the Thai football association will be on stage. Besides, Worawi Makudi president of the Thai FA since 2007 would like to be re-elected.

Since 2007 Worawi is in charge of the Thai FA as president and he is a member of the FIFA-executive committee since 1997. Under his reign the the results Thailand achieved, especially over the past years, can be described as poor. This is not only valid in terms of success for the national team, even more it is valid for the development of the football in Thailand in particular.

At last latter was on of the reasons fans in Thailand gathered together in protest recently against him. They even handed over a public letter to one television station, demanding his resignation. May Worawi shine under the current boom of the Thai Premier League, the credit probably needs to go to TPL chairman Dr. Vichit Yamboonruang. For 2 years he works untiringly for the success and the development of the league.

He would certainly be a suitable candidate to run for office of the president, however, the fans had some different person in mind during the time of protest. Withaya Laohakul, current coach of Chonburi FC. But he is more a man from the practise rather than of the sport politics and the hand shakes you have to do in such a position.

During the actual preparations for the election the name Vijit Ketkaew once more was a ghost in the press as possible challenger of Worawi. Vijit was president of the Thai FA for a decade before Worawi took over. And he was one of the most unpopular chairman in history of the Thai football.

Just as it seemed that nobody would dare to enter against Worawi, a candidate stepped into public this week. It is Pichet Mankong, president of Thai Premier League side Thai port FC. With no doubt, Pichet can be called a unique specimen. His trade marks are a moustache and a smoking pipe. That is really uncommon for a Thai. Together with coach Sasom Pobprasert he signs responsible for the success of the club in recent year by winning the Thai FA and League Cup.

In a press conference on the 26th of April he wants to announce his candidature officially. However, already the first statement is revealing. He like to see football in Thailand on systematic ways and like to speed up development in the local game overall. Not just in particular areas. He wants every club treat by the same. He wants to put the focus at the development in youth football and not just only at one senior national side.

The upcoming election should be more transparent and more democratic for the first time than in the past. Besides, the complete FAT committee including the president should be allowed to be elected. For that reason Worawi presented a whole new election draft on 30 March 2011 which is in accordance to FIFA directives for association elections. The draft is about to vote on a general FAT meeting on 13 May 2011. Nevertheless, in addition 2/3 majorities is necessary. Finally the election should be held some when in June/July this year and each new member of the board than will be elected by 58 voices. They are allocated as follows. 36 clubs of the TPL one voice each. Clubs from the Regional League will be represented by 10 combined eligible votes. Further representatives eligible for vote should come from the amateur competitions B, C and D, from women's football, Futsal, Beach Soccer, the referees, a speaker of the coaches, and the fans. Besides, all people eligible to vote must correspond to a legal entity. Thus it intends at least the draft.

Pichet Mankong is a very likeable person, remains to be hope that he takes no damage if he enters against Worawi and he can prove to have enough steadfastness. He seems to be in contrast to former candidates, none of the representatives who hang on old-boy network from politics and military.
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