Your Meeting Was Invalid: ABFA Tells Clubs Their Extraordinary Meeting ‘Did Not Conform to the ABFA Constitution’

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By Neto Baptiste

The Antigua and Barbuda Football Association (ABFA) has labelled a meeting convened by clubs on October 4 “invalid”, saying it “did not conform to the ABFA constitution”.

The meeting, held on the date in question, was convened by the concerned clubs in accordance with the constitution after their initial attempt on October 1 to have the gathering was unsuccessful due to a lack of quorum.

Initially, the meeting held on October 4 should have happened 24 hours earlier in accordance with the constitution which states that the follow up meeting should happen 48 hours after the failed attempt. The clubs were however forced to delay the meeting to the passage of tropical storm Philippe.

Presidential candidate for the FA’s last general elected held in April last year and a member of the Wings Sport Club, Barbara Coates, expressed both shock and disappointment over how the body has chosen to handle the situation.

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Acting president of the ABFA, Daryl Michael (right), is seen with VP Gwen Salmon (centre) and technical director Sowerby Gomes

“I was so stunned to see that was the response that came back from the ABFA’s secretariat when we all knew that a storm was passing. We were so careful in how we did everything that even at the first meeting when we didn’t have a quorum a motion was moved, it was seconded that incase the storm passes we’d have to use the first immediate day and that was approved at the meeting. I just got a call from the ABFA stating that the meeting for Second Division has to be postponed because of the passage of the storm coming so I don’t know,” she said. 

The FA, in its communique to the clubs, said that despite what they believe to be a correct legal opinion and interpretation of the constitution to rule the gathering “invalid,” the matters raised by the clubs will still form part of the agenda for the upcoming Congress slated for the end of the month.

Coates said they have however replied to the body with their own concerns.

“We have already written back to them and the first thing we noticed is that Daryl Michael signed acting president and the constitution speaks directly as to how that is supposed to be done. He is not supposed to be the acting president signing on any letter because he is not the longest serving vice president. We spoke about the fact they are saying that due to the fact that the storm passed that everything is null and void, we told them that is impossible and we are using back the same constitution. Additionally, we made mention to them as well that the executive does not and cannot overrule any decision made at a congress and it is in the same constitution,” she said.

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Presidential candidate for the FA’s last general election held in April last year and a member of the Wings Sport Club, Barbara Coates

Coates revealed that the clubs have already engaged FIFA on the matter.

“We have already started sending documents off to FIFA because in article 27 [of the constitution] which speaks to the extraordinary congress in number one, the very last sentence says the members can seek assistance from FIFA and that is what we are doing,” the FA presidential hopeful said.

The ABFA meeting is scheduled for October 30 at the Multipurpose Cultural & Exhibition Center at Perry Bay.

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