by Agnes Amondi
Football Kenya Federation (FKF) has turned down a request by the Sports Dispute Tribunal (SDT) to take part in a “stakeholders virtual roundtable discussion” scheduled on Tuesday afternoon.
In a letter dated June 1, addressed to the Chairman of the Tribunal, John Ohaga, the federation said it will wait on FIFA to convene a meeting over its elections, an outcome that SDT called for when it instructed the world governing body to form a Normalisation Committee.
“The Tribunal requested FIFA to consider installing a normalisation committee for the purposes of inter alia, holding the elections of FKF. The Tribunal is well aware of the position taken by FIFA on its request by FIFA and by dint on Article 14 1 (a) of the FIFA statutes, the federation is duly bound to comply with the directives already taken and communicated to FIFA by the Tribunal via its letters dated March 25, 2020 and April 6, 2020 copies of which the federation has already forwarded to you in previous communication.”
“Therefore, following that communication by FIFA and bearing in mind that FIFA is expected to communicate a way forward to the federation after the COVID-19 pandemic is contained and/or is over, FKF will wait FIFA direction and communication on how FKF will conclude its elections and which communication will be shared with the Tribunal.” Stated the letter.
Further, FKF showed its unease over how the Tribunal has handled cases before it with regard to its elections. As such, it does not perceive the SDT as an “impartial and neutral third party” to play the role of an arbitrator.
“Ideally, a mediation process is partly driven or voluntary. Usually, negotiations in mediation are undertaken before an impartial and neutral third party without decision making powers. In any event, the stakeholders of football in Kenya comprise of many other parties and entities outside these proceedings.”
FIFA is yet to set a date for the meeting that it declared itself after the March 17 STD’s ruling, as opposed to forming a normalisation committee as was requested by the tribunal.
It will meet the SDT, FKF and the Ministry of Sports to discuss how the elections will be conducted.