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Avire: Sofapaka feel cheated and robbed after Fifa's Committee ruling - Kalekwa

17:02 GMT+3 12/03/2020
John Avire of Sofapaka
The administrator has vowed to appeal the ruling regarding the player insisting he is still part of Batoto ba Mungu

Sofapaka FC have released an official statement indicating they feel cheated and robbed by the Fifa's Players' Status Committee who ruled that Football Kenya Federation (FKF) should give the Egyptian side Tanta SC John Avire's International Transfer Certificate (ITC).

The saga between the 2009 league champions and the Egyptian side has been running since July 2019. The former accused the latter of signing the player illegally and refused to release him insisting he is still their member. The case was later presented to Players' Status Committee and judge Geoffrey Thompson ruled in Tanta's favour

However, Batoto ba Mungu insists Avire has a running contract with the club and that they do not agree with the ruling.

"Sofapaka FC would like to put matters straight regarding the issue of striker John Avire who has been missing from the team since July last year," read an official statement obtained by Goal and signed by club President Elly Kalekwa.

"The club is protesting a decision made by Fifa, through a single judge seating in the Players' Status Committee, Mr Geoffrey Thompson that Avire who has been illegally training with Egyptian league side Tanta SC, be given a provisional International Transfer Certificate (ITC) to enable the player feature for the Egyptian side as the matter continues to be investigated by the World football governing body.

"We feel cheated and robbed since the directive is going against Fifa statutes because it means, therefore, the said player has two contracts with different clubs."

The KPL side have confirmed writing to the Football Kenya Federation (FKF) regarding the new development.

"We have written to Football Kenya Federation (FKF) and Fifa protesting the decision because the player has a valid contract with us and questioned in case he gets injured while playing for Tanta FC during the provisional period, they may as well chase him yet there's no binding agreement between Sofapaka and Tanta SC.

"We’re also questioning why Fifa up to are yet to even acknowledged the letter sent by Fkf about Avire’s saga for months ago, yet they responded so fast after the Egyptian FA on behalf of Tanta FC wrote to them."

According to Kalekwa, the team will move to the Court of Arbitration in Sports (CAS) if an amicable solution is not reached.

"Further, we would like to inform our fans and members of the public at large, that Tanta has never reached to us in view to resolving this impulse since it started, but rather, we have been approached by people who are very familiar to us purporting to be negotiating on their behalf.

"Sofapaka trusts the process being undertaken by Fifa and hope for a free and fair ruling but also in consultations with Fkf we’re contemplating moving to Court of Arbitration in Sports (CAS) for arbitration."

Avire was part of the Harambee Stars squad that played in the 2019 Afcon held in Egypt.