FKF to challenge KPL court order, vows FIFA action
Football Kenya Federation (FKF) has announced intentions to challenge the court ruling that ordered a 16-team format be adopted by the Kenyan Premier League.
FKF also vowed seek the counsel of World governing body FIFA on the latest set-back that is poised to rock the flight league in its current 18-team set up.
The court ruling made on Thursday also nullified the CAF/FIFA club licensing requirements after terming its adoption by the FKF as ‘irregular’.
“FKF acknowledges receipt of the decision by High Court Judge, Justice John Mativo, declaring that the 2017 Kenyan Premier League Season be reverted to a 16 club league, following a petition launched by one Sam Nyamweya.
“We wish to clarify that we shall be tendering our appeal at the Court of Appeal in due course in an effort aimed at protecting the sanctity of the sport,” a statement sent to newsrooms by the local governing body read.
In the statement, FKF also took a swipe at ex-president Sam Nyamweya who filed the petition earlier this year, claiming he was driven by a motive is to frustrate strides made by the office that took over him in February this year.
“The federation remains committed to its footballing mission and will not be distracted by the ongoing effort by a section of disgraced former Football Administrators, keen on suffocating the development of the game at all levels.
“We shall also be providing an update to FIFA on the judicial development locally as we further seek to tap on their technical capacity in our forth coming Appeal Suit,” FKF said.
Nyamweya gave a swift but brief response, only saying the FKF had the right to appeal.
“Having been a key stakeholder at the signing of the KPL/FKF agreement, I found it necessary to follow that channel after the developments that I felt were not good for Kenya’s football,” Nyamweya told Citizen Digital.
The repercussions of the ruling could force the demotion of Zoo Kericho FC and Nakumatt FC – back to the second-tier having been promoted from the National Super League (NSL) as the 17th and 18th KPL sides.
Such would also mean a recalculation of KPL points with those earned from wins or draws against the two clubs omitted from the season tally.
The club licensing requirements, now declared null and void by the court, had sparked sharp criticism from the KPL management after Muhoroni Youth and Sofapaka FC were relegated to the NSL for being non-compliant.
In their place, Vihiga United and KCB FC – who had finished fourth and fifth during the previous NSL season – were promoted to the top flight but the move was met by a fierce resistance from the KPL management.
In response, KPL vowed total support for Muhoroni and Sofapaka and declined to release fixtures for the 2017 season and forcing FKF to suspend the league indefinitely.
However, a move brokered by the Sports Disputes Tribunal saw the KPL expanded to an 18-team format with Muhoroni and Sofapaka retained in a win-win move that paved way for kick-off.
-Additional reporting by Jacob Icia.
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