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Right to reply to Mr Likalé

Right to reply to Mr Likalé

Mr Likalé,

To answer you letter dated 24 April 2017, it is false to say that Rugby Afrique is against the development of rugby in the Central African region. In response to these serious and unjustified allegations, please read below :

  • Rugby Africa never favors one union over another, all member unions are subjected to the same rules and sanctions. Proof is that Morocco Rugby Union was also suspended for some time and Mauritania Rugby Union still is.
  • Rugby Africa has made a lot of mediation efforts to try and solve the crisis in FECA rugby by sending representatives several times to Cameroon, namely Mr Adama Bakhoum and Mr Marcellin Zahui who suggested a joined leadership system which you refused.
  • Since FECA Rugby was re instated in Rugby Africa during our General Assembly in December 2014 in Marcoussis, Rugby Africa has assisted all those wanting to grow the Game in Cameroon. Training workshops were recently organised with our Regional Training Manager Adama Bakhoum and Regional Development Officer Charles Yapo.
  • These efforts were made by Rugby Africa despite the limited volume of activity in the union two years after the suspension was lifted.
  • We note that Cameroon was not represented at Rugby Africa’s latest General Assembly in Kasane in December 2016.
  • FECA Rugby’s application to host the 2017 Rugby Africa Bronze Cup was validated by Rugby Africa indeed in an effort to boost the Game in Cameroon.
  • The suggestion from FECA Rugby’s President to give a mandate to the General Manager Mr Ngono (whether he goes by the name of George or Ngah doesn’t matter to us) was approved by Rugby Africa. You changed your mind recently for reasons that remain unclear to us but the fact of the matter is that Mr Ngono appears to be working with an aim to fulfil the commitments made when applying to host the Rugby Africa Bronze Cup.
  • Rugby Africa has agreed to wait, to postpone, to cancel flight bookings incurring penalties, to wait some more, all this impacting the other teams in their preparations, in order to help Cameroon Rugby. 
  • Rugby Africa has requested guarantees from the Ministry of Sport and Prime Minister showing that the tournament in Yaoundé was officially endorsed. We are still waiting for one last autorisation letter. 
  • For the last two years, Rugby Africa has been receiving numerous, very long correspondence mainly attacks from one party to the other one. We do not have the time or the resources to deal with this, neither is it our purpose. 
  • Divisions and permanent internal struggles in FECA Rugby are the only reasons why this union is still in poor shape. Despite Rugby Africa’s willingness to help and work with those on the ground who are still committed to grow the Game, personal fights seem to always be taking over. 
  • Rugby Africa will not answer with further defamation. Your allegations against the President of Rugby Africa are directed to Rugby Africa as a whole, since everything regarding FECA Rugby has been discussed and approved by Rugby Africa’s Executive Committee. accept to be insulted in such a manner and our Executive Committee will convene on May 17 to decide on appropriate sanctions. 

We deeply regret this situation which is detrimental to Cameroonian players, to the development of the Game in the Central African area while Cameroon should be playing a leading role in the region, and to the image of African rugby broadly speaking. In order for the FECA Rugby to operate again in a transparent and healthy manner, Rugby Africa is willing to work with the Sports Ministry of Cameroon to organise and Extraordinary General Assembly or engage in any other process deemed adequate.

Yours sincerely,
Abdelaziz Bougja
Président Rugby Afrique