T&T Pro League campaigners Cunupia FC has claimed vindication according to last Friday’s ruling of the Court of Appeal which basically granted FIFA the power to have its Normalisation Committee govern football in T&T, the club’s Attorney Peter Taylor has said.
The ruling, which comes amid a nine-months battle among the T&T Football Association which is led by William Wallace, its general membership and the sport’s world governing body - FIFA, for the right as to who the legitimate managers of the sport in T&T should have been, after the FIFA appointed a normalisation committee in March, on the basis that the TTFA executive, was not fit to manage the sport.
The TTFA, having won the TTFA elections in November last year, was found to have placed the country’s football on the brink of insolvency. Cunupia FC claimed to have been hurt by the battle among the TTFA, and FIFA, and last month took legal action for losses of approximately $4.5 million, which was due to the court battle between the TTFA and FIFA.
On October 13 the central club dropped their legal claim, coincidentally on the same day the High Court Judge, Justice Carol Gobin ruled that the TTFA was the legitimate body to run the affairs of T&T football. The TTFA requested the Pro League team apologise for its claim and pay its legal as it was done to maximize on the publicity of the TTFA/FIFA issue. TTFA’s lawyer Matthew Gayle made the demand in a letter to Cunupia FC coach Michael Du Four last earlier this month.
However, yesterday, Taylor said the clubs feels vindicated by the Court of Appeal ruling that TTFA was bound by its own Constitution and its decision to file its application in the local courts was ultra vires null and void and of no effect. He noted the ruling also saved precious judicial time and costs that would have been incurred, had the Club maintain its action all the way to trial via the High Court.
"The ruling is confirmation that Cunupia's claim was neither frivolous nor vexatious and therefore the request for payment of costs by William Wallace's lawyers for costs is unsustainable. The matter was withdrawn before any Defence was filed and before any Case Management Conference was held," said Taylor.