GOR AWARDED POINTS: KPL leaders welcome decision on aborted match as AFC Leopards vow to appeal
FOOTBALL By Gilbert Wandera | August 26th 2015 | 2 min read
Gor Mahia have been awarded Sunday’s abandoned Kenyan Premier League (KPL) match against arch-rivals AFC Leopards.
The team earned three points and two goals, taking their tally to 59 points. Gor Mahia deputy secretary general Ronald Ngala confirmed the move and said he was delighted KPL have made the right decision.
“We expected it. We were not at fault at all. The rules are very clear that all teams are responsible for the conduct of their fans,” he said.
He defended Gor Mahia, who have come under criticism over insecurity during the match played at the Nyayo National Stadium.
“As a home team we did all that was required of us and the KPL was satisfied with the arrangements. We therefore deserve to be awarded the match,” he said.
Ngala said a precedent had already been set in the matter before, when his team lost a match against Ulinzi Stars after their fans went on the rampage.
But reacting to the ruling, AFC Leopards Secretary General Asava Kadima said they will appeal insisting Gor Mahia as the home team failed to provide enough security.
“In our opinion the match was mismanaged right from the start. There wasn’t enough security and according to us, it should not have been allowed to go on in the first place.”
Kadima said that even before the match kicked off, two gates had been brought down, allowing fans to get into the stadium without tickets.
“When the gates were brought down, it allowed all manner of people to get in and cause trouble.
“In my opinion therefore, the match should be replayed because none of the teams were responsible for its abandonment,” he added.
He warned that Leopards will appeal to the highest level after their opponents were awarded the match as this would be unfair to them.
He claimed that match commissar Paul Kaunda has already shown bias by being quoted in the media pointing out who caused the abandonment.
“The match was abandoned due to criminal activities and yet the commissar is blaming our fans, most of whom were seriously injured in the fracas. With such comments, we don’t expect any fairness,” he said.
The match was called off in the 64th minute after alleged AFC Leopards’ fans refused to have Gor Mahia take a penalty.
The violence has been condemned in various quarters with Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero threatening to ban the teams from playing their matches in Nairobi. Yesterday a number of fans were arraigned in court.
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