Kuwait foot­ball reels as chief resigns...

Kuwait Times - - NEWS -

sus­pended player dur­ing a match be­tween the two sides as part of the VIVA Foot­ball League. Kuwait won 21. Kuwait’s de­fender Fahd Al-Ha­jri had re­ceived a red card dur­ing a Nov 2 match be­tween Kuwait and Kazma Sports Club, held as part of the Crown Prince Cup. Red cards re­sult in an au­to­matic one-game sus­pen­sion, but be­cause he ar­gued with the ref­er­ees, he was sus­pended for an ad­di­tional game.

The au­to­matic sus­pen­sion was handed out ac­cord­ing to the KFA’s com­pe­ti­tion reg­u­la­tions. But the se­cond-game sus­pen­sion came from the KFA’s dis­ci­plinary com­mit­tee, and was an­nounced on Nov 6. The dis­ci­plinary com­mit­tee can choose from at least two dif­fer­ent clauses re­gard­ing the ad­di­tional game sus­pen­sion. One such clause bars Ha­jri from play­ing a se­cond game in any tour­na­ment. But an­other clause bars him only from a se­cond game in the same tour­na­ment.

So a prob­lem arose when Ha­jri played in the VIVA tour­na­ment. Arabi ar­gued that Ha­jri was of­fi­cially sus­pended and there­fore they should be awarded the match as a walkover 3-0 win. But Kuwait ar­gued that the sus­pen­sion was only ap­pli­ca­ble to the Crown Prince Cup and doesn’t ap­ply to the VIVA League. The KFA’s dis­ci­plinary com­mit­tee sup­ported Kuwait’s po­si­tion and agreed that the sus­pen­sion is only ap­pli­ca­ble to the Crown Prince Cup.

KFA’s dis­ci­plinary com­mit­tee said it has the sole au­thor­ity to de­ter­mine the type, du­ra­tion and other effects of a sus­pen­sion. It also pointed out that in case of a con­flict, the dis­ci­plinary com­mit­tee’s de­ci­sion is to be fol­lowed. As a re­sult, the dis­ci­plinary com­mit­tee re­jected Arabi’s claim, the com­mit­tee’s chief Saad AlBughaili ex­plained to the press. Salmiya Sports Club also filed a very sim­i­lar com­plaint against Jahra Sports Club for field­ing what it claimed were two ‘sus­pended play­ers’. The dis­ci­plinary com­mit­tee re­jected Salmiya’s com­plaint for the same rea­sons.

After los­ing the ap­peal, Arabi an­nounced on Sun­day that it was of­fi­cially with­draw­ing from the VIVA League. “We are con­vinced that hon­or­able peo­ple in Kuwait’s sports scene have become fewer, and there­fore we of­fi­cially an­nounce with­draw­ing from the VIVA League,” said Ab­du­laziz Ashour, Arabi’s Vice Pres­i­dent, who posted the with­drawal de­ci­sion on the club’s of­fi­cial Twit­ter ac­count. Salmiya is also ex­pected to with­draw.

“Jus­tice and equal op­por­tu­ni­ties do not ex­ist in your fed­er­a­tion,” Arabi also wrote on its Twit­ter ac­count ad­dress­ing Ha­sawi. “Your pres­ence in the tem­po­rary com­mit­tee tar­nishes your sportive history.” Ha­sawi later an­nounced his resignation. Other KFA of­fi­cials also re­signed, in­clud­ing the vice pres­i­dent of the com­pe­ti­tion’s com­mit­tee Ab­bas Dashti, as well as tem­po­rary man­age­ment com­mit­tee mem­bers Hus­sein Al-Khadri and Saleh Al-Enezi.

The tur­moil comes just months after the dis­so­lu­tion of KFA’s pre­vi­ous board of di­rec­tors. On Aug 28, the Pub­lic Au­thor­ity for Sports dis­solved the board and ap­pointed a tem­po­rary man­age­ment com­mit­tee led by Ha­sawi. FIFA sus­pended KFA and all Kuwaiti teams from in­ter­na­tional com­pe­ti­tions on Oct 16, 2015, claim­ing gov­ern­ment in­ter­ven­tion in the as­so­ci­a­tion and sports clubs’ af­fairs.

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