NPFL19: Remo Banished To Oshogbo, Fined N6m

REMO STARS

Remo Stars have been fined a total of six million Naira and ordered to play their next three home matches in Oshogbo, Osun State following the pitch invasion and attack on match officials by club supporters in the aftermath of their one all draw at home to Bendel Insurance on Match Day 3.

The club has been handed a suspended three points deduction which will come into effect in the event of a repeat occurrence this season.

Club proprietor Kunle Soname has also been handed a three match ban and fined one million naira for granting a media interview after the match “that failed to show due respect to the Match Officials” and for failing “to set a positive example for others, particularly players and supporters”. Mr. Soname had granted an interview after the game in which he appeared to lay the blame of fan restiveness on centre referee Bethel Nwanesi who was left with a gaping head wound after the attack.

The sanctions against Remo Stars come on the heels of similar punishment meted out to Plateau United following a similar incident in their match-day 1 encounter against FC Ifeanyiubah where home fans attacked match officials after the game ended in a barren draw.

The sanctions which were communicated in a letter sent to the club by the Chief Operating Officer of the League Management Company (LMC) Salihu Abubakar also targeted Team Manager Mr. Yinka Ajayi who has been suspended from all Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) matches for the rest of the season.

Remo Stars have also been directed to “assist relevant security agencies to apprehend and prosecute two of their supporters identified as Akintan Yinka and Zico” who were fingered in the melee that occurred after the game.

The LMC charged Remo on six-counts ranging from access to restricted area by unauthorised persons and blocking match officials from accessing the dressing room (B13.52), encroachment onto the field of play immediately after the match (Rule B13.18), throwing of objects including stones towards the match officials, failure to provide adequate security for match officials when they were attacked by the club’s supporters (B8.21) and conduct of officials and supporters of the club in the disturbances capable of bringing the game to disrepute.

The LMC ordered the club to pay one million naira each for the following: failure to ensure restriction of access to unauthorised persons; encroachment immediately after the match, throwing of objects towards the field of play, failure to provide adequate security for match officials, conduct capable of bringing the league to disrepute and compensation to the match officials.

The LMC also delivered a seven-day ultimatum to Remo Stars to apprehend and prosecute two fans – ‘Akintan Yinka’ and ‘Zico’ – who is alleged to have a played a big role in the fracas “as well as other persons who participated in the assault on Match Officials”. The club will be fined twenty-five thousand Naira every day “until such time as the culprits are apprehended and charged to court”.

The LMC has directed that the club communicate in writing their acceptance of the sanctions or intention to contest the decision a committee within 48 hours.

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Abideen Owolabi

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