Why Kaizer Chiefs’ appeal against their Fifa transfer ban is taking so long to be resolved by Cas

The involvement of clubs in different countries could be a large part of the reason for Kaizer Chiefs’ appeal against their transfer ban at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (Cas) taking long to come to a ruling‚ says South African Football Association (Safa) acting CEO Tebogo Motlanthe.

South Afrian Football Association CEO Tebogo Motlanthe has explained potential reasons that could be behind CAS taking so long to announce a decision on Kaizer Chiefs.
Image: Sydney Seshibedi/Gallo Images

Cas rulings‚ such as when Burkina Faso challenged the annulment of Bafana Bafana’s 2-1 World Cup qualifying win against Senegal in Polokwane in 2016‚ can take a long time to be made.

Fifa annulled the result‚ following the ban of referee Joseph Lamptey for “match manipulation” related to betting‚ in September 2017.

Burkina Faso took the appeal to Cas‚ and Safa initially thought of supporting it‚ “but we never pursued it”‚ Motlanthe said.

The outcome to uphold Fifa’s decision came back in January 2018‚ four months later.

Motlanthe‚ as Safa’s legal head then‚ might not have been directly involved in that Cas appeal‚ but certainly would have observed it closely.

Chiefs have been banned for signing players for two transfer windows having been found guilty by Fifa of illegally signing Andriamirado “Dax” Andrianarimanana in 2018‚ when he allegedly had a contract with his former club Fosa Juniors in native Madagascar.

Chiefs’ lawyers presented to Cas in Lausanne‚ Switzerland on September 9. Motlanthe was asked why he thinks the court can take so long to come back with decisions.

“Look one will not be certain but of course every case is dealt with on its merits. When South Africa last had a case with Cas it was when Thanda Royal Zulu went to the court‚” he said.

“And Cas did it here in South Africa and the decision went out quite fast‚ because the judges came from Switzerland and did the case in South Africa.”

The case‚ in 2013‚ involved Thanda attempting to have the National First Division annulled. Motlanthe said the difference with Chiefs’ case is that this one involves more than one country.

“Look‚ it was strictly South African case [with Thanda]. Remember in some cases they are dealing with teams or members from different countries‚ so that’s the other challenge.

“With the Chiefs matter‚ my participation has been very limited.

“At some stage Chiefs had to send the contract [to Cas] which the player signed with Chiefs. It involved a lot of things‚ like hand-writing experts.

“And then different laws for different countries create problems too.”

Asking Motlanthe how long he thinks Chiefs’ case may take is like asking how long a piece of string is.

“I will be open‚ it’s difficult to say. Especially when you are not involved with the case.

“Our involvement was that they [Juniors] just sent a contract‚ which we allowed Chiefs’ lawyers to come and view‚ and then we returned it back to them.

“It’s difficult because you don’t know how far Cas are with the case. Chiefs’ lawyers will know exactly where they are.”

Chiefs’ chairman Kaizer Motaung has expressed his frustration at the time being taken for the Cas decision.

Amakhosi have watched their big three rivals hoover up a lot of signings in the midst of Covid-19 economic effects‚ and the sale of two PSL clubs – Bidvest Wits and Highlands Park.

TimesLIVE (TMG Digital)

BY MARC STRYDOM

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