David Stewart MSP

MSP supports Niculae permit appeal

david08062007.jpgHighlands and Islands Regional Labour MSP David Stewart is supporting the appeal of Inverness Caley Thistle signing Marius Niculae, who has had his initial application for a work permit refused by the Home Office.

Mr Stewart, a keen Caley Thistle supporter and club trustee said, “I have been approached by the club regarding the situation Marius now finds himself in.

“When Marius recently signed for the club, like many fans, I was delighted as he is a player of stature, experience and talent who has represented Romania on 28 occasions, scoring 12 goals.

This is the club’s most significant signing yet and shows the clear ambition of Inverness Caley Thistle to progress further up the SPL to the top six.

“I have looked at the Home Office conditions which have to be met for the granting of a work permit for a footballer in Marius’s circumstances; one is that the player’s home country must be within the top 70 of FIFA’s world rankings.

“Romania’s national team’s position meets this requirement. Another condition is that the player must have played for his country in at least 75% of its competitive ‘A’ team matches, during the two years preceding the application.

“Despite his international record as a player Marius, unfortunately, does not meet this requirement.

“These are however only guidelines for an initial application and I am aware there have been many precedents of even internationally unknown non-EU players with no links to the UK being granted work permits.

“The application by Marius will now go to appeal and the important thing now is to gather support for the legal team to use at the hearing.

“With this in mind I have today launched an e-petition and would encourage all Inverness Caley Thistle fans to not only sign the petition themselves, but to encourage family and friends to do likewise.

“The petition can be accessed at :


Mr Stewart added, “I have also written to Jacqui Smith, a former Westminster colleague and current Home Secretary calling on her to intervene to support Marius’s case. “I would hope that when the appeal tribunal sits that they examine all the facts of the case closely, including precedents already set and the level of support for Marius in and around Inverness.

Marius is very keen to play for Caley Thistle whose management are delighted to have secured the signing.

“He undoubtedly has a key role to play in the club’s future.

“I hope common sense prevails and his appeal is successful.”


Written by davidstewart

August 3, 2007 at 8:10 am

Posted in Uncategorized

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