ESFNA Sponsor wants its Money Back By LJD
According to the Ethiopia First website editor, one of the cronies of Sheikh Al Amoudi, the Sheikh withdrew his sponsorship of the Ethiopian Sport Federation in North America (ESFNA). And he is asking back the $240K he donated this year to the organization.
It appears that Al Amoudi went public with the request on Thursday, May 19, 2011, because of an email Mr. Getachew Tesfaye, one of the ESFNA board members, sent to his colloquies on March 15, 2011.
Mr. Tesfaye on his email commented that “What is politics is not the selection of Ms. Birtukan, it is what our leaders did to reverse the selection and the relentless effort by the PR office to maintain the status quo. The leadership is convinced that money will cure all. I disagree. My preference would be to return back this blood money or donate it to the hungry in Ethiopia and hold the tournament in a high school stadium with a guest of honor that is approved by the majority.”
Via the Ethiopia First editor, Al Amoudi made known his intention to drag the ESFNA to court, if it failed to return his money.
Some board members contested the Sheikh cannot ask his money back.
The writer advice the ESFNA board members to consider seeking guidance from their lawyer on this matter before responding to the Sheikh request. Food for thought, if the sponsorship of the Sheikh is formed on a hand shake, sponsorship contract formed on a hand shake present tremendous proof problem if it needs to be enforced in court. If the sponsorship is formed by a signed contract which unambiguously stated situations the sponsor may consider as a breach of contract, the Sheikh request must be handled based on the terms of the contract.
In my opinion, losing the Sheikh sponsorship might be a blessing in disguise to the federation at this point in time of its existence because the Sheikh sponsorship of the organization did not bring peace, prosperity, and good leadership to the federation. Instated it caused misery, mistrust and corruption among the organization board members. Worst of all, it alienated most of the Diaspora from the federation. As a result, those members of the Diaspora who lost hope in the federation started The Ethiopian Heritage Society in North America a highly promising organization if it lives up to its name. And if it learns from the mistakes the ESFNA leadership has been making.
The writer can be reached at LJDemissie@yahoo.com