NISCGA officials and lawn bowlers depart for the Commonwealth games today after Chief Justice dismissed injunction

Seen at the airport today, Young lawn bowler TK Tagelagi (left) and NISCGA President Maru Talagi depart for the Commonwealth Games today

Chief Justice Craig Coxhead over the weekend dismissed the application filed by the Niue Lawn Bowls last week to prohibit the national sports body NISCGA from sending a Niue Lawn Bowls team to the Commonwealth games.

Chief Justice Coxhead declined and dismissed the application saying that ‘the athletes are the innocent parties and they should not be deprived of their opportunity to represent Niue at the Commonwealth Games’. 

Today, the Niue Lawn Bowlers selected by NISCGA three weeks ago, Norman Mitimeti, Tukala Matua Tagelagi will join Dalton Tagelagi and the rest of the team in Auckland before leaving together for the games.

Also on today’s flight leaving the island NISCGA President Maru Talagi and Team Manager Brad Ikinepule Etuata.

The ex-parte application for the injunction was filed last week on the grounds that NISCGA Executive and President Mr. Maru Talagi failed to comply with the ruling of the Niue High Court Chief Judge Coxhead handed down on June 30th, that the unilateral selection of the Niue Lawn Bowls by NISCGA breached the 3H and 4B of the NISCGA constitution, and therefore the team selected was declared null and void.

Judge Coxhead in his decision recognised from the explanations submitted by NISCGA that matters in dispute is now beyond NISCGA’s control in terms of getting new athletes accredited. 

“Despite my decision of 30 June NISCGA, and in particular it seems NISSGA appears to continue to act unilaterally. NISCGA does provide some explanations that matters are now out of NISCGA’s control in terms of getting new athletes accredited”.

On the application of contempt of court against NISCGA Executive, Chief Justice Coxhead dismissed the application saying that this is a presumption given no actual grounds of contempt was submitted and it is unclear who was alleged as in contempt of Court.

“I presume that the contention is that Mr. Talagi or NISCGA Executive are not obeying the Court’s decision of 30 June and continues to act unilaterally in breach of Articles 3H and 4B of the NISCGA Constitution”.

Chief Justice Coxhead did state in his decision that “Certainly, Mr. Talagi’s actions as president of NISCGA have been in breach of the NISCGA Constitution but more concerning is that his actions potentially put athletes’ opportunities to attend the Commonwealth games in jeopardy. His actions must raise genuine concerns for the sports people of Niue going forward. 

BCN News hopes to bring coverage of Team Niue’s lead-up to and their participation at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham due to begin on Friday next week.

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