NAIROBI, Kenya, August 23- Belgian Adel Amrouche breathed a sigh of relief, after the Confederation of African Football (CAF) reduced his one-year ban to six matches, following his appeal against the initial heavy sanction.
Amrouche was slapped with the lengthy ban after being accused of allegedly spitting on a fourth official during Harambee Stars 2015 Africa Cup of Nations pre-qualifiers second leg against Comoros in Maseru, May 30.
The man whose future as Harambee Stars coach is in doubt will nonetheless fork a USD 10,000 (Sh883,000) fine.
“Having reviewed new evidence on the record, including the DVD of the game, the images provided by the plaintiff and the testimony of Comoros head coach who was a direct eye witness of alteration, we concluded there was no certainty as to the facts alleged against the plaintiff,” the statement from CAF read.
“However, based on the DVD, the Appeal Board found the behavior of the Kenyan coach through the match was not blameless, he repeatedly engaged in disrespectful attitude against central referee of the match and the fourth referee, especially following his ejection.
“For these and other reasons, the Board of Appeal acknowledged Amrouche was responsible for having violated section 82, 83 of the CAF Disciplinary Code, relating respectively to the principal of conduct 82 and responsibility 83,” the Appeals Board continued.
“The Board of Appeal under the provisions of Articles 31,32,33,82,88,117 and 129 of the CDC and Article 36 of the regulations of the African Cup of Nations, sanctioned Amrouche with a suspension of six matches without a presence on the reserve bench for anti-sporting behavior effective May 30.”
Amrouche alongside his two assistants James Nandwa and Ken Odhiambo as well as goal keeper trainer Iddi Salim were initially fired by Football Kenya Federation (FKF) immediately Harambee Stars were bundled out of the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations pre-qualifiers by minnows Lesotho August 3 in Nairobi.
The federation went on to appoint Gor Mahia coach Bobby Williamson to replace the Belgian assisted by retired captain Musa Otieno and former international Simeone Mulama as the Team Manager.
FKF are yet to terminate Amrouche’s five-year contract and on Wednesday federation boss Sam Nyamweya said, “Amrouche wrote a letter to us as we requested and as NEC we are going to look at it and reply accordingly.”