Cyprus Mail

CFA opposes bill to exclude it from betting gains

The Cyprus Football Association said on Tuesday it opposes a bill that would take away its share from the state’s betting revenues because it would be returned to the government as part of an agreement to repay clubs’ debts.

A delegation of the CFA headed by chairman Giorgos Koumas met House President Demetris Syllouris on Tuesday to explain their position.

Speaking later, Koumas said the current deal gave the CFA 1.5 per cent, or some €600,000, of the state’s proceeds from betting and another 0.5 per cent went to other federations through the sports organisation (KOA).

“The 1.5 per cent the CFA received … returns to the state,” Koumas said.

The money, he added, is used to repay clubs’ debts to the state and the CFA did not want that to change because it wanted the dues repaid.

The proposal, tabled by the Green party and the Citizens’ Alliance, provides for the 2 per cent to be given to KOA, which, unlike the CFA, was subject to state audit.

Green MP Giorgos Perdikis said they wanted to know how the money was used.

He added that the footballers’ association had also asked for the money to be given to them directly to be used for players’ welfare and insurance, whose system was lacking.

If KOA wanted to give the 1.5 per cent to the CFA it could do so but it would be accountable on how the money was used.

Koumas said the CFA had agreed with the state to repay the debts through instalments, half of which is paid by the club and half by the association. The cash from betting was over and above the installment.

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