February, 25 2022.
Lobi Stars and Gombe United are to play their next home fixtures without fans on stand, as the League Management Company (LMC) rolled out sanctions for breaches of the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) Rules and Framework following separate incidents on MatchDay 14.
Abia Warriors and it's General Coordinator, Mr. John Kalu were also sanctioned for security related breaches in their match against Rivers United.
Salihu Abubakar, the Chief Operating Officer of the LMC and who signed letters conveying the sanctions said measures aimed at sanitizing the League would continue to be exercised for the good of the game, the clubs and the fans.
Kalu, the Abia Warriors Coordinator was found to have championed the harassment of Match Officials, an action that is capable of bringing the League to disrepute. He was reprimanded and ordered not to be part of NPFL activities for the next eight MatchDays.
The club was fined a total of ₦2.5m (₦2,500.000) for failure to provide adequate security, failure to ensure restriction of access of unauthorized persons to restricted area, encroachment on the field of play and harassment of Match Officials.
Gombe United in addition to playing their next home game without fans, has also been fined a total of ₦2m (₦2,000.000) for failure to provide adequate security cover for the visiting team at the end of the match to ensure they departed the city without obstruction and safety.
The fine also included #500,000 for failure to ensure proper ticketing, crowd management and convenient allocation of seats to fans. Completing the #2m fine is another ₦500,000 for the throwing of objects into the field of play by the club's supporters.
An official of Gombe United, Mr. Bulus Plando was banned from NPFL MatchDay activities for eight MatchDays.
The LMC has also penalised Lobi Stars for breach of Rules B13.52 relating to failure to provide adequate security during the MatchDay 14 game against Remo Stars.
In addition to closure of Aper Aku Stadium to fans for their next home game, Lobi Stars was fined a total of ₦1.5m (₦1,500,000) and ordered to provide before their next home game, adequate lighting within the precincts of the stadium, particularly the tunnel leading to the dressing rooms. The club was also ordered to reinforce security arrangements for its remaining home fixtures to avoid stiffer sanctions.
Plateau United got into the LMC books for encroachment on to the field of play to protest a goal scored against them in Gombe on MatchDay 14, leading to a six minute holdup of the match. The club was fined ₦1m.
The LMC also registered it's displeasure with Plateau United for releasing a misleading and unsubstantiated report and video to the public after its MatchDay 14 fixture in Gombe. The content which was published on social media has been adjudged by the LMC as capable of bringing the League to disrepute and the club was advised to utilise existing channels of communication to file such reports in future or face sanctions.
Aside the clubs, three match officials were recommended for a review of their performances arising from incidents that occurred in matches they officiated.
Habib Ghali and Ahmad Rabiu from Kano State Referees Council and Aguguesi Franklyn from Imo State Council were referred to the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) Referees Appointment Committee for a review of their competence to officiate in NPFL matches till further notice.
All those sanctioned reserve the right to submit to the decisions or elect to appear before a Commission. Such decision is to be communicated in writing within 48 hours of receipt of the notice.