I posted this in another thread today ( Club Statement Hazem El Masri)
Yes but it is a shame the NRL itself could not afford him the respect he deserves. It has been reported that he has only been offered a contract with the NRL to take up the duties he was stood down from during the investigation at a salary around 80 % less. That is a bloody disgrace and a downright insult to one of the ornaments of the game. Whilst he was serving his time away from the game the NRL moved on, fair enough I suppose but now it is settled they treat him like this.
It beggars belief that the Nrl will not reinstate him to his prior position under commensurate conditions. Where was their presumption that he may be found not guilty and would be in a position to recommence his role as an ambassador. He has been found NOT GUILTY
of any crime but is cast aside while the NRL continues to allow convicted
wife bashers, drug cheats, sexual deviates to earn a damn good income from the game whilst Hazem has been afforded zero respect. HE was found not guilty
of any of the charges but still the stigma surrounding a charge ( as I said now dismissed) of domestic violence means he is treated with virtual disdain.
Hazem maintained his innocence all along and he welcomed a swift hearing of the charges, unlike some who sought repeated continuances allowing them to still play the game and earn a massive income while doing so, or hid behind the coat tails of their club and CEO.
Pardon the language but it is a fucking disgrace and just shows exactly where the NRL loyalty lies.
MEANWHILE I AM STILL WAITING TO HEAR BACK FROM THE NRL COMMUNITY LIASON OFFICER REGARDING OUR DONOR AWARENESS CAMPAIGN. SIX MONTHS, COUNTLESS EMAILS AND PHONE CALLS AND THEY STILL CANNOT GIVE ME THE TIME TO PROPERLY DISCUSS THE MATTER, JUST PROMISES THAT THEY WOULD GET BACK TO ME. NO WONDER THE NRL TREATED THIS TRUE LEGEND AND GENTLEMAN THE WAY THEY HAVE, THEY SAY THEY CARE BUT DO THEY? I APOLOGIZE TO DROP BEAR AND ED WHO ARE TWO GENUINE GUYS WHO JUST WANTED TO GET A MESSAGE ACROSS VIA THE NRL. ONCE AGAIN THE NRL REALLY DON'T CARE.
A devastated Hazem El Masri has rejected an offer to re-join the NRL as an ambassador after the governing body offered him a revised contract worth 80 per cent less than the deal he was previously on.
El Masri has had a long association with head office following the completion of his glittering football career, but the relationship came to an abrupt halt after the was charged with assaulting ex-wife Douah El-Cherif. The NRL immediately ordered El Masri to stop making community visits, including one to his son's school, as soon as charges were laid. El Masri cleared his name when police dropped charges last month, with Canterbury immediately welcoming one of their favourite son's back into the fold as an ambassador.
The NRL has been much slower in coming to the negotiating table and, when it did, El Masri, was insulted by their offer. The revised deal, worth about $350 per community visit, works out at about $10,000 a year and is approximately 20 per cent of the contract he was previously on.
Let down: Former NRL star Hazem El Masri. Photo: Peter Rae
Still smarting from the fact the NRL didn't afford him a presumption of innocence - particularly given Roosters star Shaun Kenny-Dowall was allowed to play on while waiting to be cleared in court - there was no way El Masri was going to accept a reduced offer.
"They have been given another chance to stand by my side and they still haven't. It's hard to take," El Masri told Fairfax Media. "Instead of standing by my side and moving forwards, they have gone backwards. I can't comprehend it, to be honest. It's hard to swallow.
"I am disappointed because I've been loyal for so long, even when the AFL came to [poach] me [as an ambassador]. I've always given 100 per cent. Especially with what happened lately, I have kept it to myself. I don't want to bag anyone, I have a lot of friends in the NRL and I want to continue that [friendship] with some of them. I just don't know what direction they are heading towards."
Asked if the NRL had offered an apology for not sticking solid while he was waiting to clear his name, El Masri said: "The only comment they made is that, 'It could have been handled better'. That's not an apology, that's just a way out."
El Masri has gone above and beyond the call of duty during his time as an ambassador, most notably in his efforts to stage the NRL's Harmony Day in Punchbowl four years ago. The former Blues and Kangaroos winger worked tirelessly on the project for three months, saving the NRL about $70,000 by arranging free use of Parry Park with the council, as well as organising the associated catering, rides, prizes and infrastructure.
However, Rugby League Central's decision to put him on the same rate sheet as its other 40 ambassadors means El Masri won't be sharing his story with the members of the community who need to hear it most.
"It's heartbreaking because of the communication I have with kids," he said. "Especially with the flock of refugees coming in ... English is their second language. I can relate to that, that's my story. I came to Australia at the age of 12, I had to work my butt off to be able to make a living. It's all about respect, believing in yourself and striving. Dream, believe, achieve – this is what I'm about.
"I came here as a non-English person who had never played the game, I played soccer and then I made the Bulldogs. It's a story to show you can succeed if you just work hard. Language barrier? Don't worry about it. I've experienced everything and I can relate to these kids."
An NRL spokesperson said it had a full complement of ambassadors for 2016, but had decided to offer El Masri up to 25 appearances at the going rate.
"Regrettably, Hazem has declined that offer but we accept his decision," the spokesman said.
El Masri, a former Ken Stephen Medal winner for his services to the community, said he had received strong support from most quarters during the most trying period in his life.
"It's been a very tough time for me, my family and everyone," El Masri said. "The people have been fantastic, they've gotten right behind me. They just want me to be involved in the community. They know what type of person I've been from day one, always taking time out to say hello and put a smile on someone's face.
"I've been through a hell of a lot in my life, probably a lot more than any other player out there because I was part of the Bulldogs team that went through the salary cap dramas, the Super League dramas, the Coffs Harbour dramas.
"Being a Muslim, too, I've been through September 11, the Bali bombings, the Cronulla riots, so many things. But I stood strong because I'm here for everyone."
Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/rugby-league/...ambassador-20160412-go4p98.html#ixzz45elw6nkD
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