HIGH COURT OF LESOTHO
Application of :
FOOTBALL CLUB Applicant
SPORTS COUNCIL First Respondent
FOOTBALL EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE Second Respondent
FOOTBALL CLUB Third Respondent
FOOTBALL CLUB Fourth Respondent
FOOTBALL CLUB Fifth Respondent
FOOTBALL CLUB Sixth Respondent
GENERAL Seventh Respondent
by the Hon. Mr. Justice J.L. Kheola on the 26th day of April, 1985
an application for an order in the following terms;
"1. A Rule Nisi calling on all Respondents on a date to be
determined by the above Honourable Court to show cause, if any,
(a) All the Respondents should not stop preparations for the Top
Mount District Soccer Giant Finals sheduled, for the 26th, 27th
28th April, 1985 forthwith until further directions by the above
(b) First and Second Respondents should not be directed to include
applicant in the Top Mount District Soccer Giant Competition
(c) First Respondent and Second Respondent should not be direct to
pay the costs of this application.
(d) Why the above court should not grant such further and or
alternative relief as it deem fit.
2. Prayer 1 (a) operates with immediate effect as an interim
Mr. Gwentshe for the Applicant appeared before me at 4.30 p.m. 26th
April, 1985 and moved the application and sought urgent relief.
founding affidavit has been made by one Tseliso Monaphathi who claims
to be the Secretary-General of the Applicant. He has
deposed that on
the 25th March, 1985 the Second Respondent issued a Circular No.4 of
1985 for the Top Mount District Soccer Competition.
According to the
Circular the matches were played as follows:
On Saturday the 20th April, 1985 -
(i) Fourth Respondent beat Qachas Nek 2 - 0
(ii) Third Respondent beat Mokhotlong 4 - 0
On Sunday the 21st April, 1985 -
(iii) Applicant drew 2 - 2 within the first 90 minutes with
Thaba-Tseka and proceeded to win 8 - 7 after taking penalties.
(iv) Fifth Respondent beat Quthing 3 - 2.
(v) Sixth Respondent drew 3 - 3 within the first 90 minutes with
Butha-Buthe and then proceeded to win 8 - 7 after penalties were
Monaphathi further deposed that the Applicant ought to have been
selected to take part in Finals because of its victory against
Thaba-Tseka. He avers that the Second Respondent's action of
excluding the Applicant from the Finals was procedurally unjust in
much as it was contrary to the Lesotho Sports Council Rules for Top
Mount District Soccer Giant Competition, more specifically
2.2 (b) (3) and (5). In deciding to exclude the Applicant from the
Finals the Second Respondent acted contrary to the principles
natural justice in that the Applicant was not given the opportunity
to be heard. He goes on to say that the Applicant stands
R3,000 as first prize in the competition if the
are not restrained forthwith from going ahead with the Tournament.
Application was brought before me, the final tournament was about to
start in less than one and half hours at 6.00 p.m.
It was quite clear
that the matter was extremely urgent and that the four teams that had
been selected were already in Maseru with
their fans. I had no doubt
in my mind that some fans had already paid their gate fees and were
already sitting in the stadium.
I am pointing out these things
because in order to obtain the interdict at the eleventh hour, the
Applicant had to show in no uncertain
terms that it had a clear
2.2 (b) reads as follows:
competition between the district teams shall be on a knock-out
district teams shall be fixtured by lot by the S.F.E.C.
four teams which attain the highest goal difference shall qualify
for the final tournament.
inter-district matches shall be played at the National Stadium.
there is a tie, the number of goals for, shall be taken into
consideration, and where there is a further tie, the Senior
Executive Committee shall resort to the drawing of lots in order to
finally classify the teams." (My underlining).
to the evidence before me the Third, Fourth and Fifth Respondents
qualified for the final tournament by beating their
Applicant and the Sixth Respondent failed to beat their opponents
within the first 90 minutes of their games. They
awarded penalties and they each won by scoring eight goals to seven.
This meant that there was then a tie between
the Applicant and the
Sixth Respondent. Article 2.2. (b) (5) provides that where there is a
tie, the number of goals for shall
be taken into consideration and
that if there is a further tie the Second Respondent shall resort to
the drawing of lots. In the
case the Second Respondent had no alternative but to resort to the
drawing of lots because the Applicant and the Sixth Respondent
the first tie on points and the second tie on the number of goals in
Applicant alleges that the Second Respondent did not observe the
principles of natural justice when it made the decision to
from the final tournament in that it was not given the opportunity to
be heard. It seems to me that Article 2.2 (b)
(5) makes no provision
that before the Second Respondent can resort to the drawing of lots,
it must give the teams concerned a
chance to be heard. I do not see
any need that the teams should be heard before such a step is taken
because it was common cause
that there was a tie between the
Applicant and the Sixth Respondent.
Applicant's case had been that the Second Respondent had not resorted
to the drawing of lots in order to finally classify
the teams but had
arbitrarily selected the Sixth Respondent, that would have been a
different matter and I would have had no hesitation
to grant the Rule
application was dismissed.
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