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Supreme Court injunction stops Premier League of Belize from holding Elective Congress

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Posted: Sunday, April 11, 2021. 1:08 pm CST.

By Rubén Morales Iglesias: A Supreme Court injunction was served on the Premier League of Belize (PLB), to stop the football body from proceeding with an Electoral Congress on Saturday.

Clifford King said he was duly elected as president of the PLB on December 5, 2020.

“The duly elected Executive Committee of the PLB, were able to secure a Supreme Court injunction yesterday evening to stop the PLB, under the illegal leadership of Ian Haylock from holding an Electoral Congress today, Saturday, April 10, 2021,” King said in an email on Saturday.

King said that the PLB Congress members called an Extraordinary Congress for December 5, 2020, and that he and the following persons were elected to serve as the PLB Executive Committee: President – Clifford King, Vice President – Major Kenrick Martinez, Members – Attorney-at-Law Deshawn Arzu-Torres, Superintendent of Police Andres Makin Sr., and Dale Ernest Banner: King said that the executive committee have looked for recourse in the Belize Judiciary after not getting any favorable response from the Football Federation of Belize nor from football’s international bodies.

“Despite our numerous attempts to have the FFB endorse our legitimacy and facilitate the smooth transition from one EC [Executive Committee] to another, such attempts have been futile,” King said. “Additionally, we have attempted to get the regional and international football governing bodies to intervene in support of resolving the dispute within the PLB; such attempts have been futile as well.”

The FFB said the national football governing body doesn’t recognize the Clifford King executive because they did not follow protocol and were not elected in a sanctioned elective congress.

“We cannot recognize a body that has not followed proper procedure,” FFB Secretary General Earl Jones said. “They called an Extraordinary Congress after FFB had issued a directive to revise the PLB statutes and then proceeded with the elections.”

Jones said that after the electoral committee walked out of the PLB 2020 Elective Congress, the FFB Electoral Appeals Committee ruled that Congress null and void and ordered the PLB to revise its statutes before proceeding with elections.

Jones said upon that decision, the FFB named the Executive Committee led by Ian Haylock which had been in place up to then as the PLB caretaker committee until the statutes were revised. Jones added that in December 2020 the PLB caretaker committee asked for an extension to finish the revision of the statutes. He said that the extension was granted and the Elective Congress was called for Saturday, April 10.

Jones said that on December 5, 2020, King called an Extraordinary Congress and held the elections which were not recognized by the FFB because they didn’t follow procedure.

While King has seven days to file a statement of claim before the court, Jones said the PLB intends to make an application to the Supreme Court to overturn the injunction so that it can proceed with its Elective Congress.

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