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Tema Youth heads to CAS over Accra Lions promotion

The management of Tema Youth is preparing to proceed to the Court of Arbitration for Sports (CAS) over the promotion of Accra Lions to the Ghana Premier League ahead of the 2021/22 season.

Earlier, the club petitioned the Ghana Football Association (GFA) to annul the declaration of Accra Lions FC as the winner of Zone 3 of the Division One League for the 2020/2021 season and all subsequent coronation and qualifications.

Reports indicate that the GFA are yet to respond to the petition delivered to them last week, resulting in the club’s decision to adjudicate the case at the international sports court based in Lausanne, Switzerland.

Accra Lions were crowned champions of Zone Three on the strength of their superior goals and head-to-head advantage over Tema Youth, despite both teams finishing the season with 65 points each.

However, Tema Youth is challenging the qualification of the Accra-based side, insisting the Appeals Committee of the Ghana FA misapplied Article 13 of the Division One League Regulations, which hinge on the withdrawal of clubs from competitions.

According to the Tema-based club, the judicial body delivered a variation in award decisionsAmidaus Professionals on May 7, 2021, and Phar Rangers on July 21, 2021.

“These two award decisions invoked article 13 of the GFA Division One League Regulations for which the two clubs were charged for misconduct having breached this aspect of the DOL Regulations,” portions of Tema Youth petition to the FA read.

“The ripple effect of the variations in the two award decisions of the Appeals Committee concerning the application of Article 13 (1-5) of the GFA Division One League Regulations has affected Tema Youth Sporting Club with 2 (two) points lost in the process”.

Tema Youth, owned by former Ghana FA Executive Council member Wilfred Kwaku Osei, popularly known as Palmer, wants the association to synchronize the two award decisions involving  Amidaus Professional case and Phar Rangers FC, respectively.

It wants the GFA to use the May 7 Amidaus ruling as a precedent in the Phar Rangers case or strict application of article 13 (1-6) of the 2019 Division One League Regulations in both cases.

If the petition is successful, and the GFA rectifies all records of matches played and match statistics to reflect the true position of each club in zone 3, Tema Youth would be declared winners of the zone and qualify for the Ghana Premier League.

Tema Youth’s petition is built on what is seen as the misapplication of the rules in favour of Accra Lions by applying the same Article 13, which deals with the withdrawal of clubs from the DOL, differently in the cases of Amidaus Professionals and Phar Rangers respectively.

They argue that while the same committee ruled that all clubs who had already played Amidaus Professionals should forfeit their points following the club’s withdrawal from the league, it directed that clubs that were yet to play Phar Rangers should be credited with three points and three goals.

“The synchronization of the two cases would have created the needed balance, fairness and equity to determine the true placements of the respective teams on the league log to avoid the instant situation where some clubs including Tema Youth Sporting Club have been unfairly treated by the variations in the two award decisions losing valuable two-point lead over Accra Lions FC and Tema Youth as failure do so would bring the two teams on equal pegging for zone 3 to be decided on head-to-head basis,” the petition reads.

“We gracefully entreat you to consider our petition in outmost good faith to declare Tema Youth Sporting Club as the winner of zone 3 and all related records rectified to reflect same. The two cases of withdrawal must be synchronized to ensure balance, equity and fairness to protect sporting integrity in our GFA competitions”.

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