Akan sides with NFA

Jesse Jackson Kauraisa

WINDHOEK

Coach Ali Akan has urged the public to give the Namibia Football Association’s (NFA) executive a chance to transform the sport.

Elected in February, the executive has been faced with numerous challenges, including the restarting of football.

Things have not been rosy for the executive under the stewardship of president Ranga Haikali, following a series of battles with the Namibia Premier League (NPL).

In the meantime, the football leadership expelled the NPL as its member and decided to start its own top-tier league with clubs belonging to the NPL.

This decision was met with mixed reactions, with some clubs siding with the NPL and objecting the NFA’s request to form a new league.

Give them time

“All previous NFA leaders were given time and that is what should be done with the current NFA executive.

“I also believe that the NFA top-tier league will be great for football and not the Business and Intellectual Property Authority (BIPA) league NPL is trying to create,” he said on Namibian Sun’s Sport Wrap show on Monday. Akan, who has been part of Namibian football since 1995, has laid the blame for the chaos experienced in Namibian football on the current NPL executive.

He insisted that the NPL executive should have complied with the request of the Fifa normalisation committee, which ordered league officials not to relegate any clubs as there were no teams to promote during the 2018/19 season. “I do not want to mention names but I can say that the NPL was wrong for not complying.

“Things would have been different had they complied with the request of the normalisation committee and also that of the new NFA executive which came into power,” Akan said. The NPL, however, still maintains its innocence, and has taken its suspension, which happened before the expulsion, to the Court of Arbitration for Sport. The leadership executive reiterated that it was not up to them to start the first division and it therefore had to relegate clubs that finished in the bottom three, given that the league had been officially concluded.