Cameroon cancels Elite One season, PWD Bamenda win first title

Africa Cup of Nations 2021 host Cameroon has opted to cancel its domestic football season with immediate effect, and declared PWD Bamenda as champions, according to a statement seen by ESPN.

Following a meeting by the Cameroon Football Federation (FECAFOOT) Executive Committee on Tuesday, conducted by video conference, a decision has been reached in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Football in Cameroon was suspended on Mar. 17, following health measures taken by the Government, and the federation missed last week's deadline by the Confederation of African Football to declare the fate of the current campaign.

On Tuesday, a decision was reached, with the statement outlining the "definitive stopping of the professional leagues Elite One and Elite Two, of the first division of the national women's championship, and of the national championships of youth football for the 2019-20 season.

"[Also] the cancelling of the regional, departmental and arrondissement championships and of the second division of women's football."

The decisions were reached following a meeting with various bodies including the Transitional Technical Committee (CTT), the medical and security commissions of FECAFOOT and representatives of both clubs and players in order to clarify the options open to the country's football.

PWD Bamenda, who led the table on 47 points after 28 matches, have been declared champions, according to the federation's statutes, and will represent Cameroon in the CAF Champions League.

It's the first time in 11 years that a club from the English-speaking part of the country has won the title, and a first championship for PWD, who were only promoted to the top flight in 2018.

Domestic giants Coton Sport, one point behind them having played a game more, end the season in second place.

According to the statement seen by ESPN, the teams who were in the relegation positions in the Elite One when the league was suspended -- Avion Academy, Tonnerre Yaounde and Dragon de Yaounde -- will remain in the top flight next season.

They will be joined by the top two teams from Elite Two -- Les Astres and YaFoot -- which will see an expanded top flight next season.

Similarly, the bottom two teams in the second tier will not be relegated ahead of the new campaign.

Last month, FECAFOOT announced plans to support clubs and more than 100 players and coaches with financial support during the pandemic.

The federation has been significantly affected during the health crisis, losing its administrative and financial director, Ebeneser Nzonila; Bernard Momo, the former president of Aigle Royal de la Menoua; and Racing Club de Bafoussam chairman Samuel Wembe to the illness since the pandemic reached Cameroon.