The LMC (League management Company) -organizers of the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) have charged four clubs for various breaches bothering on failure to provide adequate security and unacceptable supporters behavior even as match officials involved in three of the ten games of Match Day 32 also received queries.
Nasarawa United, Giwa FC, Abia Warriors and Heartland FC were fined minimum of half a million Naira as the LMC exercised Summary Jurisdiction after thorough investigation of reported crowd incidences during the matches involving the four sides.
In the various notices of Summary Jurisdiction signed by the LMC Chief Operating Officer, Salihu Abubakar and sent to the clubs, they were issued the statutory 48 hour notice to submit to the decisions of the LMC or indicate in written response a choice to appear before a panel.
In specific rulings concerning the affected clubs, Giwa FC as hosts of the fixture against Kano Pillars was cited for breach of Article C1 and B15.16 and consequently fined N500, 000 and N250, 000. For the unruly behavior of their fans which Article B15.16 makes clear is a responsibility of the club, Giwa FC was fined N500, 000 while another fine of N250, 000 was imposed on the club for failure to ensure adequate security at match venue.
While Nasarawa United was also cited for unruly conduct of their fans in the match against Lobi Stars, fined N500, 000 and warned against a repeat which will lead to stadium ban to supporters and relocation to neutral venue, Abia Warriors and Heartland were also fined N500, 000 for unruly behavior of fans and failure to provide hitch free match day experience.
Abubakar in a statement on the NPFL official website the sanctions are a demonstration of the LMC’s strong objection to failure on the part of clubs to provide hitch-free match day experiences for the thousands of fans who have since the implementation of various reform initiatives been returning to the stadiums for NPFL games.
In a related development, Referee I. Indabawa from Kano and his two Assistants from Kwara State, M. Surakat and S. O Toyin were recommended for investigation by the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) Referees Appointment Committee for below par performance in the Abia Warriors vs Rangers fixture.
Also recommended for investigation was Assistant Referee A. Bulus from Abuja for deficiencies in the handling of the Heartland FC vs Enyimba. The Referees recommended for investigation were also requested to be withdrawn from further handling of matches in the NPFL until after the conclusion of investigation.