Constantin Mutima, manager of Burundi national football team, has threatened to lodge complaint to FIFA against Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF) after failing to get promised prizemoney of US$20,000 for the latest edition of the Bangabandhu Gold Cup, which was completed on January 25.
Burundi finished runners-up after losing 3-1 against eventual champions Palestine in the final and they received a symbolic cheque of the aforementioned amount, but even after two and a half months, neither Burundi nor Palestine have got any prizemoney from the BFF.
Mutima contacted this reporter on Monday and alleged that the BFF officials are not even responding to their calls and that they might inform the matter to the Prime Minister's Office.
"We came to play the tournament for the first time in Bangladesh and we came second in the tournament. We were supposed to get $20,000. Now is three months after the final. If we send message to the Bangladesh Football Federation, message is read but no answer. Now if they don't pay money by end of this month, we are gonna take this case to the FIFA and the office of the Prime Minister (Bangladesh) because she is the one presented the trophy and prizes," said Mutima through a text message.
BFF general secretary Abu Nayeem Shohag, however, claimed that the file regarding the cash transfer is with the Bangladesh Bank.
"We should have sent their money by March but we could not send the money as we did not focus on this issue due to the coronavirus situation. We expect to pay the prizemoney as soon as the shutdown comes to an end," Shohag said, admitting that they have also not paid the US$30,000 prizemoney to champions Palestine.
The BFF had earlier made similar delay in paying US$50,000 to former champions Nepal for nearly two years before being forced to clear the amount after reports regarding the issue came out in local media.
Asked whether they have arranged for the money, Sohag said, "There are instructions to follow for all government procedures regarding sending money aboard. Money is no problem; we will send it as soon as we get permission. We have already got permission from the finance ministry and the file is with the Bangladesh Bank."