NPFL Slams Enyimba N10m Fine After Match Abandonment


Enyimba International FC has been fined N10m.


The Nigeria Premier Football League imposed the hefty sanctions following the club’s conduct during the Match Day 35 fixture against Rangers International FC held at the Nnamdi Azikiwe Stadium in Enugu on Sunday, June 9.


In a letter to Enyimba, dated June 10 and signed by the NPFL Chief Operating Officer, Davidson Owumi, the league outlined multiple breaches of its rules committed by Enyimba during the ill-fated encounter.


Notably, Enyimba was found in violation of Rule C9, having failed to ensure the proper conduct of its players, officials, and supporters. The club was also cited for breaching Rule B6.23, disrupting the transmission of a live broadcast.


On Sunday, there was drama in Enugu during the highly-anticipated game between Enugu Rangers and reigning champions Enyimba, as the game was abandoned deep into stoppage time as a result of fans invasion.


With the game still goalless in added time, centre referee John Ojeleye awarded the home side a penalty but the away fans were said to have invaded the pitch in protest, leaving the game abandoned.


Ruling its verdict on Monday, the letter noted that Enyimba contravened Rule B13.18 as its team and supporters threw objects and encroached onto the field of play. In a particularly damning indictment, the club was deemed to have breached Rule C1.1 by refusing to continue the match in protest against a penalty awarded to their opponents, an act deemed “against the principles of fair play, sportsmanship, the league rules, and capable of bringing the game to disrepute.”


Furthermore, Enyimba was found guilty of causing the disruption and discontinuation of the match, a violation of Rule B13.24.


Consequently, the NPFL has imposed a series of stringent sanctions on the club including a fine of N1m for failing to ensure the proper conduct of their team; A fine of N5m for disrupting a live broadcast; A fine of N1m for throwing objects onto the field of play; A fine of N1m for encroachment onto the field of play; An order forfeiting three points and three goals in favour of their opponent for refusing to allow the penalty awarded against them to be taken, thereby disrupting the match and bringing the game into disrepute; A fine of N2m for causing the disruption and discontinuation of the match.


Additionally, Enyimba has been ordered to identify and produce for further investigation and appropriate sanctions other players and officials complicit in the disruptive conduct that led to the discontinuation of the game. The identified players include Eze Ekwutoziam (Jersey No. 6), Chibuike Nwaiwu (Jersey No. 27), and Akanni Elijah (Jersey No. 10).


The NPFL has given Enyimba 48 hours to either submit to the summary jurisdiction and the prescribed sanctions or elect to be dealt with by a disciplinary panel. Failure to comply or a frivolous appeal may result in additional sanctions.


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