Football-La Passe win appeal against illegal player


La Passe’s FagnoremaOriginally La Passe had been deemed to have fielded an ‘illegal player’ by the disciplinary committee after a complaint was brought about by their bitter rivals Anse Reunion.

Anse Reunion had argued that La Passe fielded Malagasy striker Fagnorena Farampin in their encounter played on April 6, 2013 when his Gainful Occupation Permit (GOP) had expired on March 28, 2013.

Anse Reunion were asked to provide proof which they eventually did and the disciplinary committee ruled at the end of May that La Passe had indeed fielded an illegal player and therefore had to forfeit the three points that they had been awarded for winning the contest 2-1.

After such a ruling, the La Passe management decided to appeal the case in front of the Seychelles Football Federation (SFF) executive committee to relook at their arguments as they were convinced they had not broken any rules.

It took the executive committee more than a month to come to a final decision and on Tuesday this week the La Passe management were informed in a meeting with the executive committee that their appeal had been allowed which means they have regained the three points.

Speaking to Sports Nation, SFF chairman Elvis Chetty said La Passe’s appeal is allowed on the ground of retrospective law of the state where GOP is concerned. The law states that a worker can still work while his GOP is being processed and cannot be declared an illegal worker or player.

“La Passe had stated four or five grounds on which they thought they should be re-instated their points and though they lost on three grounds, based on this ground of the law of the country in regards to employment, their appeal has been allowed. Their appeal was successful based on provisions within the immigration decree in regards to employment,” Mr Chetty said.

Fagnorena gave La Passe the lead in the 33rd minute but Anse Reunion came back to equalise at 1-1 in the 55th minute through Malagasy Hugo Sezou who rifled in a superb strike which sailed past goalkeeper Vincent Euphrasie.

As the game headed for a draw, former Quincy striker Alex Dugasse scored in the 89th minute for a 2-1 score to give La Passe all the points.

La Passe vindicated

Sports Nation also spoke to Gerald Lablache, La Passe’s club president, who said he had tried to defend their case in front of the disciplinary committee which does not understand the law of the country and therefore they (La Passe) were punished.

“We always believed we were correct as we know our rights under the constitution and the football bye-laws and no one can deny us these rights,” Mr Lablache stated.

Mr Lablache was rather relieved as common sense had prevailed in the end in this case as the points re-allocated has helped his team to move into second position in the league, one point behind Côte d’Or.  But he also was unhappy with these happenings as well as the legitimacy of the disciplinary committee.

“It is clear that there is a manoeuvre to destabilise our team and it is annoying as it keeps happening. The federation must also decide what kind of disciplinary committee it sets up in the future. It should not comprise executive members but rather be made up of individuals who are knowledgeable of the law of the country and bye-laws of the sport,” noted Mr Lablache.

As for Anse Reunion’s manager Pierre Barbé when contacted about this verdict, he said he would not comment until he is informed formally of the latest development in this case.
Surely there is to be another twist in this saga.

Sports Nation will keep you posted on any development regarding this matter.

R. J-L.

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