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Sports Features Thu, 3 Sep 2015

Can Kotoko overturn the GFA DC’s ruling?

The decision of Disciplinary Committee to declare Hearts of Oak winners of the game they lost against Kotoko has pushed the Porcupine Warriors to the drop zone and could be condemned to relegation with two matches to end the season.

I want to stir this controversy, after having gone through the ruling, I want article 39 (5) which talks about an unqualified player to be tested.

I don’t want to be mischievous, but I always want certain things which are not clear to be challenged for the real interpretation to come out so that in the near future Ghana league doesn’t go through crises like what we witnessed when King Faisal placed an injunction on the Ghana Premier League, following their relegation.

I am more particular with the clause 5, section (V) which states that a player on 3 yellow cards shall be suspended from taking part in the next official game. Article 39 (5) V has been highlighted below.

(v) any other offence on the field of play, shall be informed in writing by the GFA for a first and second offence, he shall be automatically suspended from taking part in the next official match for any other subsequent offence”. (This is verbatim)

Obed Owusu’s next game after his three yellow cards was the game against Berekum Chelsea and after Kotoko having used him for that match does he necessarily have to serve a suspension, if Chelsea weren’t interested in lodging a protest, because they beat Kotoko in Kumasi or were not aware of the ineligibility of the player.

I am interested in the statement that the player is “suspended from taking part in the next official match.” The GFA status and regulation don’t say that the suspension is transferable from one match to the other until the player serves the suspension, but it rather talks about the next official game, which in this case was the Kotoko Chelsea game. It is neither the Kotoko-WAFA game, the Kotoko-Ashgold game, nor the Kotoko-Hearts of Oak game, so how come this.

If suspension is transferrable like what the ruling wants us to understand, then Medeama would have filed a protest to be declared the 2015 FA Cup champions, if they had lost that remarkable final on Sunday, because Obed Owusu was still not eligible for the game, but he played.

Kotoko just centered their argument on the Elite without, making room for the scenario that the player is declared unqualified by studying the article that talk about an unqualified player. I want to see Kotoko fill an appeal and include this in their defence to test the above sated article.

Ghana Football needs to be saved by ensuring that some of these technicalities are not used to win points, after a game had been played. It is quite pathetic for board room points to determine who goes to relegation and who stays in the league.

On Kotoko’s defence using the Elite Cup special rules, I chanced on a copy and after reading I thought the same line as Kotoko, but the Disciplinary Committee best understands the status and regulations governing Ghana football.

I am not against anybody, but I always want to the right thing done. In my job as a sports journalist it is Kotoko who have suffered most from my research findings and just yesterday I wrote an article to emphasize on the fact that they have 8 F A Cup titles and not 9 as they claim. I also revealed that the 2011/12 league title was Kotoko’s 21 and not 22 just to set the records straight.

Some people believe that the 1956/57 league wasn’t a proper league, Hearts should be recognized as champions, but based on the research I did I will forever defend that Hearts of Oak won it, because they were crowned league champions

I have stated these for people to know that I am not trying to be bias toward Kotoko, because of my contrary opinion on this case.
Source: Thomas Freeman Yeboah