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Cameroon Amateur Clubs Contest CAF’s 2019 AFCON Withdrawal

Cameroon (National Times)-The Executive Bureau of the Association of Amateur Football Clubs in Cameroon known by its French acronym as ACFAC says it will file a complaint at the Court of Arbitration for Sports (CAS) to contest the decision of the Executive Committee of the Confederation of African Football (CAF) stripping the country of the right to host the 2019African Cup of Nations (AFCON).

ACFAC’s Executive Bureau made public their decision on Thursday, December 27, at the end of a meeting in Yaoundé.

In a release made public at the end of the meeting, the body said, members unanimously endorsed a December 7 call to file a complaint at the level of CAS against the decision of CAF’s Executive Committee.

According to the release bearing the names and signatures of Eboumou Jacques Marcel (Secretary at the meeting) and Balla Ongolo Henri Claude (President of the meeting), the complaint is contesting two decisions of CAF Executive Committee.

First, ACFAC is contesting a July 20, 2017 decision of the Executive Committee of CAF expanding the tournament from 16 to 24 teams.

There is also the famous November 30, 2018 decision of the same Committee withdrawing the 2019 AFCON hosting rights from Cameroon.

They write that their initiative is to enable Cameroon regain its hosting rights .They posit that if need be, exceptional adjustments could be made on the football calendar.

The ACFAC executive committee blames CAF for contributing to the maintenance of an executive without a mandate at the head of the Cameroon Football Federation, (FECAFOOT) before ‘arbitrarily and unilaterally’ increasing the number of teams to take part at the AFCON.

In the release sanctioning the meeting, the Executive Bureau of the Association Of Amateur Clubs cite the negative economic impact of the withdrawal of the tournament and the disapproval a of the decision by majority of Cameroonians as motivating factors.

It also highlights that Morrocco which had been mooted for a while has not applied to host the tournament. Besides these, the ACFAC release recalls the various moves taken at the level of the Ivorian, Comoros and Guinean Football Federations as controversy rages over future AFCON tournaments.

The amateur club representatives recall that in September 2014, CAF Executive Committee awarded hosting rights of the AFCON to Cameroon (2019), Ivory Coast (2021) and Guinea (2023).

It reasserts a declaration form CAF President Ahmad Ahmad that no decision has been arrived at regarding the 2021 edition of the tournament as reason to fight for Cameroon’s right.

The ACFAC piece takes note of a December 13 decision from the Ivorian Football Federation to seek legal redress at CAS over AFCON 2021 hosting rights.

ACFAC is also aware of moves at the level of the Comoros Football Federation obliging CAF to suspend Cameroon from the next two editions of the continental football show piece in line with article 92.3 of regulations in force.

15 of the 16 members of the AFCAF Bureau took part in the meeting. Abdouraman Baba, President of Etoile Filante football club known within the legal corridors of football in recent times is in support of the move.

Adouraman told reporters that Cameroon has over 500 amateur clubs which serve as nurseries for footballers, reason they have a right to contest the decision.

 

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