Following disturbances at the end of Match Day 4 fixture in Lafia, the League Management Company (LMC) has imposed sanctions on Nasarawa United, one of its players and two backroom staff.
The club will now play all its home matches behind closed doors indefinitely with some financial penalties while the player, Paul Seun Komolafe will serve a one year ban, the Curator, Aliyu Mohammed Hamzat is to serve a life ban from all Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) match venues and activities and the Media Officer, Eche Moses has been fined and cautioned. All sanctions are to commence immediately.
Komolafe is to serve a one-year ban starting immediately for accosting and assaulting the match officials and for inciting the club supporters to commit violence against match officials in the match against Plateau United in breach of Rule C11 and C1.3.
Hamzat, the club’s Curator has been banned for life from participating in all Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) match venues and activities for leading the attack on the Referee and other match officials in violation of Rule C11 of the Framework and Rules of the NPFL.
Club media officer cautioned
Moses was cited for breach of Rule C1 for releasing or causing to be released, a written press statement unfairly criticizing match officials, a conduct deemed capable of bringing the League to disrepute. He is to pay a fine of One Hundred Thousand Naira (N100,000) with a warning to desist from such conduct.
Nasarawa United were charged for breaches of Rule B13.18, B13.52.1, B13.52.2 and C1 for which the club was fined a cumulative fine of Four Million, Two Hundred and Fifty Thousand Naira (N4, 250, 000) including a N1,250,000 compensation for the Match Officials.
Fans and supporters guilty too
Under Rule B1.18, the club was charged for the action of its supporters who threw objects including stones towards match officials. This attracted a fine of One Million Naira (N1,000,000) while another fine of One Million Naira (N1,000,000) was also imposed on the club for failure to ensure adequate crowd control and prevention of access by unauthorized persons to restricted area which led to the attack on Match officials as they headed to the dressing room; considered a breach of Rule B13.52.1 and B13.52.2
Nasarawa United was also charged for breach of Rule C1, punishable by virtue of Rule B15.17 for conducts capable of bringing the game to disrepute through the action of some of its supporters, a player and an officer of the club in assaulting match officials and causing disturbances. This also attracted a fine of One Million Naira (N1,000,000) and another One Million, Two Hundred and Fifty Thousand Naira (N1,250,000) to be paid as compensation to the match officials pursuant to Rule C12 and in addition, be responsible for the costs of all verified medical expenses of the assaulted match officials. Nasarawa Utd has 10 working days to pay the imposed fines otherwise further disciplinary actions will be imposed.
Fans to be locked out
The LMC further issued an order of closure of gates to fans for all Nasarawa United home matches for an indefinite period but which can only be considered for review upon Nasarawa Utd Complying with set out criteria to improve security in venue and proper fan engagement. Such review may be done under three conditions to be met by the club and which includes organizing an orientation program for its supporters to be supervised by the LMC and Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), providing barricades that will restrict access by unauthorized persons from the stands to the dressing rooms of players and match officials and to liaise with relevant security agencies for the purpose of identifying and prosecuting perpetrators of the acts of violence and disturbances.
The club, its player and backroom staff are allowed 48 hours to respond in writing, either accepting the decisions or electing to be tried by the NFF Disciplinary Committee.