WINDHOEK - Young African Football Club chairman-cum-mentor Mali Ngarizemo gave the Namibia Premier League (NPL) until end of business today (28 January) to reinstate and revoke the combined N$50 000 fine that was imposed on his club, his lawyers Murorua Kurtz Kasper (MKK) Inc. informed the league on Friday.
Acting on the instructions of Ngaziremo, Murorua Kurtz Kasper (MKK) Inc. on Friday wrote to NPL vice-chairman Bonni Paulino challenging the relegation of Young African from the NPL and a fine of N$50 000 that was handed to them by the league’s Disciplinary Committee for allegedly registering and fielding a player under false identity last season.
In their letter, Murorua Kurtz Kasper (MKK) Inc. termed the league’s decision as “premature and misguided”, saying the NPL’s Disciplinary Committee dismally failed to adhere and take cognizance of Article 57.1, which clearly states: “penalties or orders imposed by the Disciplinary Committee or other body of the league or the NFA will only become effective when the internal remedies available to the party/parties so sentenced have been exhausted, or when the prescribed time limit to exercise the next available internal remedy has expired”.
Pointing to the abovementioned Article, the club – through its lawyers – said the league’s decision was thus prejudiced as they (the league) “ignored other applicable provisions which hold paramount value to conflicts and disputes within the NPL because they were not given any consideration and preference”.
The league’s Disciplinary Committee found Young African guilty on two counts of fraud, both counts related to the use and registration of Zimbabwean import Tapiwa Simon Musekiwa under a false identity, which the NPL Disciplinary Committee feels was intentional and preplanned.
As a result, the club was Friday relegated from the country’s flagship league and was additionally slapped with a combined fine of N$50 000 for both counts of guilt.
Confiding in the preamble and inter alia with Article 57.1 of the league’s Manual on the Rules and Regulations, Murorua Kurtz Kasper (MKK) Inc. further said the league’s decision to relegate and fine Young African is one that prejudices the club, which still has other internal remedies at hand but somehow feels the NPL’s Disciplinary Committee chose to deliberately omit.
“In light of the foregoing, we hold instructions to demand, as we herewith do for rectification and/or nullification of the decision taken on 23 January 2019 and actions of the NPL Exco in the execution of the order given in the ruling and reasons delivered by the Disciplinary Committee. Furthermore, that our client be restored to the Namibia Premier League with all benefits and rights associated, before the end of business day, 28 January 2019 (today). Should you fail to heed our demand as aforesaid our client reserves its rights,” concludes Murorua Kurtz Kasper (MKK) Inc. letter.
In a separate interview with Nampa, Ngarizemo said the league through its prosecutor Kadhila Amoomo approached them at lunchtime during their hearing and advised them to change their plea from not guilty to guilty so as to incur a lesser fine and avoid being expelled from the league.
“We took the deal because of various reasons, mainly the fact that the budget was exhausted – my focus as the owner and coach of the team was diverted. The players were also confused as to what was going on. The fans were staying away from the matches and we also did not want to stop or delay the NPL action unnecessarily, hence we agreed to the deal,” he explained.
In response, Amoomo denied offering the club a deal, saying: “How can I advise them to plead guilty when I was not acting on their instruction? Where was his lawyer when I was advising him all this? Because Mali (Ngarizemo) had his own lawyer who represented him during the hearing. He must focus on his appeal and leave me out of his issues,” he fumed.