NPL sanction Adepoju, Babalade, others


Okey Nwabeke, who is a staff of Enyimba and Shooting Stars of Ibadan trio of Mutiu Adepoju, Ajibade Babalade and goalkeeper, Ajiboye Oladele top the long list of officials, players and clubs indicted by the Match Review Committee of the Nigeria Premier League (NPL) after its sitting in Abuja.

The committee recommended two-match suspension for Nwabeke after the Match Report indicted him for delaying (the restart of) match for about three minutes in the league game between 3SC and Enyimba International after Enyimba’s Emmanuel Sunday was red-carded in the 85th minute by insisting that the player must not leave the technical bench of Enyimba, an act which breaches the NPL Rules and Regulations and capable of bringing the game into disrepute.

The committee also recommended three-match suspension for the Shooting Stars trio of Adepoju, Babalade and goalkeeper Oladele after they were, similarly indicted by the Match Report for harassing the match officials and disrupting play for about three minutes in the league fixture involving against Gombe United at the Pantami Stadium in Gombe.

The Committee, however, upheld the fines and other sanctions earlier imposed on Gombe United by the Secretariat of the NPL (N2.7million and playing three home matches behind closed doors).

Coach of Rising Stars, Sunday Erelesusi and Ayorinde Adubuola also face two-match suspensions.

Tope Adebeye, also of Rising Stars, faces suspension for the rest of the season.

They were indicted by the Match Report for using abusive words on the match officials after their game against Kano Pillars.

Also recommended for suspension from all NPL matches for the rest of the season is Kwara United official, Mr. Mumuni for hitting the referee on the head in the Ilorin derby against ABS.

Referees were not spared by the Match Review Committee’s hammer as the duo of Nwabueze Maurice. U (Abia State) and Assistant Referee (AR II), Jonathan Lar (Kaduna State) were recommended for indefinite suspension from all NPL matches pending the final decision of the Disciplinary Committee of the NFF.
Nwabueze was indicted for poor officiating in the match between Ocean Boys and Niger Tornadoes while Lar was indicted for similar offence in the match between Gombe United and 3SC.

The Match Review Committee further recommended that the NPL Secretariat writes letters warning various clubs and State Football Associations against reported cases of harassment and other unsporting conducts, particularly, the throwing of extra balls into the pitch by ball boys to disrupt play as well as stopping visiting teams from recording matches from designated Camera points at the league venues.

In addition to the recommendations, the Match Review Committee forwarded all the cases to the Disciplinary Committee of the NFF for further hearing and final decisions.
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