The Namibia Premier League (NPL) has written to the secretary general of the Namibia Football Association (NFA), Franco Cosmos, cautioning that if the local football association does not desist from using the names of six clubs, they will be left with no choice but to sue.
In a letter dated 31 March 2021, NPL’s legal representatives Dr Weder, Kauta & Hoveka Inc pointed out that the NFA unlawfully registered six NPL-affiliated clubs with the envisaged Namibia Premier Football League (NPFL). The NPFL is a new league established by the NFA to replace the expelled NPL.
In its letter, the NPL also took issue with the NFA naming its new league the ‘Namibia Premier Football League’, saying; “The NFA’s conduct by adopting a name (NPFL) which resembles NPL and registering NPL member clubs through their fans as member clubs of NPFL has a reasonable likelihood that ordinary members of the public, or a substantial section thereof, may be confused or divided into believing that the business of the NPFL is that of the NPL, or is connected therewith. The NFA’s conducts constitute actionable passing off.”
According to the NPL letter, Black Africa F.C; Blue Waters F.C; Citizens F.C; Young Brazilian FC; Eleven Arrows F.C and Tura Magic are the six clubs that were illegally and criminally registered by the NFA with the new NPFL, with the NPL insisting that the clubs remain its substantive members.
The NPL further explains that the NFA’s actions to register its member clubs with the NPFL were felonious because the NFA deliberately chose to entertain or accept ‘sham’ applications that were submitted on behalf of the mentioned clubs by ordinary supporters – intentionally ignoring continuous calls from the clubs elected leaders not to register the clubs with the NPFL as those applications were not genuine.
“…these clubs are members of NPL in that they resolved to incorporate the NPL and apart from Blue Waters F.C; are signatory to the CM44 [certificate of incorporation of a company having a share]. We write to seek a written undertaking by Friday, 9 April 2021 at 12h00 that the NFA will desist from using the name Namibia Premier Football League (NPFL) and Black Africa F.C; Blue Waters F.C; Citizens F.C; Young Brazilian FC; Eleven Arrows and Tura Magic F.C as members of NPFL. If you fail to give the above undertaking, we hold instructions to approach the High Court for interdictory relief at your costs, on 13 April 2021,” cautioned the NPL.
Should the NPL succeed in approaching the High Court, the NPFL’s planned kick-off date of 17 April could be in serious jeopardy as the court could temporarily block NFA’s plans to start the NPFL on 17 April in order to make way for further scrutiny on the matter by the court. Efforts to get a comment from Cosmos proved unsuccessful, as he did not reply at the time of going to print.