Okwahu United fined GHc500 for withdrawing from Elite Cup competition

Okwahu United have been fined an amount of GHc500.00 for withdrawing from the Elite Club Cup competition.

Okwawu United’s notification of withdrawal from the Elites Clubs Club sent on February 16, 2015 and signed by Enoch Agyare Addo (Administrative Secretary) to the Ghana Football Association fell short of the mandatory eight (8) days period required under Article 14(2) of the GFA General Regulations.

The Club was invited to the Disciplinary Committee to justify why it should not be sanctioned for the club’s failure to comply with GFA regulations on withdrawal under Articles 14(2) of the GFA General Regulations.

DEFENCE
Okwawu United in its defence pleaded guilty to the misconduct and pleaded for leniency. Okwawu United indicated that it had serious internal challenges at its Board level which could not enable the club to organize the playing body to play in the match.

Okwawu United further explained that it was not its intention to send the notification that late to the GFA but that the internal challenges couple with the date of notification for the match was its bane. Mr. Addo who represented the club narrated the rich history of the club and assured the Committee that Okwawu United had put its house in order since the incident.

REASONS FOR DECISION
The Article 14 of the General Regulations states as follows:

Article 14(1) “It shall be misconduct for a club to withdraw from a competition after the competition has started without just cause”.

Article 14(2) “Any club intending to withdraw from any competition must give notice of its intention to do so to the GFA not later than eight (8) days before the commencement of the competition. Should a club fail to comply with this rule the Association shall have the power to compel such offending club to refund any expenses incurred and take such further action as it may deem fit”.

Article 14(3) “Without prejudice to any provision in these Regulations, the GFA reserves the right to take appropriate disciplinary action, including expulsion, against any club which withdraws from a competition or fails to honour any match without just cause”.

The Committee however, held the view that Okwawu United has violated the provisions of Article 14(3) of the General Regulations even though the club had stated the circumstances which forced its hands to withdraw from the competition.

The Committee was satisfied with the plea of guilty by Okwawu United. The Committee also took notice of the plea for leniency by Okwawu United and the reasons given by the club for their late withdrawal from the competition.

DECISION
In view of the fact that Okwawu United have already been declared losers of the tie by the Elites Clubs Committee, the Committee makes the following decisions:

1. That Okwawu United is hereby fined an amount of Five Hundred Ghana Cedis (GHc500.00) to be paid to the Ghana Football Association within fourteen (14) days from the date of receipt of this Decision failing which the club shall automatically forfeit all subsequent matches after the said deadline in accordance with Article 39(8)(b) of the First Amendment to the GFA General Regulations.

2. That should Okwawu United be dissatisfied with this Decision, the club has within three (3) days of being notified of this Decision to appeal to the Appeals Committee (See Article 37(11) of the General Regulations of the GFA).


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