By Izuchukwu Okosi:
The Organising Committee of CAF on Sunday, August 17, 2014 disqualified Rwanda from the qualifiers of the Orange Africa Cup of Nations Morocco 2015 according to a report on www.cafonline.com
The decision followed a protest made by the Congolese Football Federation (FECOFOOT) during the first leg match of the second round of qualifying played against Rwanda on 20 July 2014 in Pointe-Noire.
The protest by Congo contested the eligibility of the player Birori Dady who represents Rwanda, and plays his club football for the AS Vita Club of Kinshasa with a Congolese (DRC) passport as Etekiama Agiti Tady, and a different age.
To this end, the Super Eagles of Nigeria who are still without a coach after the contract of Stephen Keshi terminated following the end of the 2014 World Cup in Brazil will now host Congo DRC rather than Rwanda who were supposed to be their opponents on September 6, 2014 in their first qualifying game for the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations in Group A.
South Africa and Sudan are the other teams that Nigeria will confront as they begin the journey to the defence of their 2013 African Cup of Nations title.
Following investigations by CAF and on the basis of documents provided by the federations of Rwanda, Congo and DR Congo, and having heard the player’s testimony on 11 August 2014 at CAF headquarters in Cairo, CAF established that the two identities only referred to a single person.
While the Rwandan Football Federation (FERWAFA) maintained that to their knowledge the player Dady Birori had one identity, investigations revealed that he was summoned as Etekiama Agiti Tady by FERWAFA to join the national team of Rwanda.
Based on these and other findings, the Organising Committee of the Orange Africa Cup of Nations in accordance with Article 41 of the regulations of the Africa Cup of Nations, and Articles 82 and 83.1 of CAF Disciplinary Code, decided as follows:
1. Immediately suspend the player Etekiama Agiti Tady / Birori Dady until further notice and ban him from playing for club and the national team
2. Rwanda declared losers of No.37 against Congo, and consequently being eliminated from the competition
3. Consign Congo to the group phase of the qualifiers of the Orange Africa Cup of Nations – Morocco in 2015 in Group A, as replacement for Rwanda
4. Reserved the right to confirm the exact length of the player’s suspension and to impose additional sanctions if necessary at the next meeting of the Organising Committee scheduled for 17 September 2014
5. Urged players and stakeholders to regulate the situation of dual identity
The decision of the Committee takes effect immediately and with option for appeal in accordance with the regulatory provisions in force in CAF Disciplinary Code.