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Soccer News of Friday, 25 May 2007

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Suspensions Annulled

The Appeals Committee of the Football Association has set aside the ruling of the Disciplinary Committee handed FC Nania and Okwawu United for their roles in playing a non-competitive game.

A ruling on an application filed by both clubs annulled the earlier decision for lack of compliance with the rules of natural justice.

“In our view, there was a clear breach of rules of natural justice in the proceedings before us. This appeal therefore succeeds in this point.

“As the proceedings suffered a fundamental lapse, we accordingly set same aside and remit the matter to the Disciplinary Committee of the Ghana Football Association to comply with its rules in this matter,” the ruling stated.

The case will now be sent back to the Disciplinary Committee for re-hearing.

Both clubs with two other teams - Mighty Jets and Great Mariners were banned and demoted to the third tier of Ghana’s football system in April for their roles in playing in a non-competitive game.

They were handed the suspensions after being found guilty by the FA’s Disciplinary Committee for engaging in non-competitive games on the last day of the Division One league campaign for promotion to the elite ranks.

However, all four teams appealed a one year ban of players and team officials plus the relegation to the third division.

Nania FC were demoted to the third division and its players and officials banned for one year from entering any dressing room after they beat Okwawu United 31-0 during the first division playoffs for Premier League qualification.

Two other clubs, Mighty Jets and Great Mariners, who were found guilty and punished for similar offences are not affected by the new decision as a ruling on their appeal is yet to be released.

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