FC AK to play in play-off final

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This was decided at an arbitration hearing on Tuesday night in the bribery and corruption case against FC AK and its owner Azziz Kara, in which FC AK’s place in the NFD final was reinstated. The arbitrator upheld the guilty verdict against FC AK, but the Inland Stream winners will not have any points deducted.

Kara and the club were each fined R500 000, with half the club’s fine suspended for five years, while Kara’s ban was reduced from the life term applied in the Safa Appeals Board hearing to 10 years.

FC AK had originally been banished from the NFD to the Vodacom Second Division by the PSL disciplinary committee, which was reduced to a deduction of 15 points in the appeal.

“The club were [last night] also instructed to pay all costs from the time of the DC through to the arbitration,” PSL prosecutor Zola Majavu told Kick Off’s Marc Strydom. “This includes all the junior and senior advocates’ fees, the arbitrator, the arbitration venue, recording devices and the league’s costs.”

Majavu said the PSL and Safa would be able to delete Kara’s details from their records. The prosecutor said he is “glad the case is over so we can all continue with our lives”.

He added: “I was accused of conspiracies and the arbitrator upholding the guilty verdict vindicates the league’s stand. In retrospect I probably agree with the finding of the arbitrator that to banish the club to a lower league would have been unfair because it would have punished the players. Rather root out the one rotten apple and deal with him [Kara].”

Majavu said the PSL might still consider applying to Fifa to have Kara’s ban extended.

Meanwhile, the aim now for both FA CK and Maritzburg United’s management and coaching staff, is to have their players in top condition for the NFD playoff final.

United will play original opponents FC AK in the play-off final in the away leg in Eldorado Park in Johannesburg on Wednesday next week, then at home at Harry Gwala Stadium next Sunday.

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