Chairperson of the country’s sport appeals committee, Loini Shikale-Ambondo, yesterday postponed the appeal hearing between the expelled Namibia Premier League (NPL), the Namibia Football Association (NFA) and the Namibia Sports Commission (NSC) to next Saturday, 27 February.
The sit-down for the appeal hearing was set for yesterday morning, but the matter had to be postponed to next week Saturday after the NSC asked to be granted more time to seek legal advice before reporting to the national appeals committee.
According to an impeccable source, both the NFA and NPL made their arguments to the appeals committee yesterday and also presented various written arguments along with oral submissions. The NSC was the only party that shied away from making written or oral submissions to the committee, saying they will first need legal advice and therefore asked that the matter be postponed and the appeals committee agreed to 27 February as the next sit-down date for the hearing.
The appeal in question is the one launched by the expelled NPL challenging the NSC’s decision not to grant them a licence to introduce and run a professional football league. The NPL is also concomitantly seeking to have its expulsion overturned by the national appeals committee.
Late last year, the NSC informed the NPL that its application for a licence to operate a professional football league could not be granted because it does not meet the set requirements as per the provisions of the Sports Act 12 of 2003 (section 26) – and, therefore, recommended that the NPL, which is currently expelled by the NFA, should rather seek readmission to the NFA as opposed to going private with its league activities.
The NPL has since filed a notice of appeal with the country’s appeals committee and cited the NSC as the third respondent in this matter. In its appeal, the banished NPL is demanding that the NSC set aside its decision not to approve its application for a licence to run a professional league.
The league is also of the opinion that the NSC’s decision was taken at an incongruously constituted meeting, nor was the decision taken by the NSC, as there is no reference of a letter confirming a meeting of the NSC at which the decision was taken.
The appeals committee was installed by sport minister Agnes Tjongarero last year August to help adjudicate local sport disputes. Lawyer Shikale-Ambondo last month took over as chairperson from fellow prominent lawyer Ruth Herunga, who resigned from the position early January.