Bayelsa United appeals punishment, pleads to IMC to ignore goals, points deduction

NPFL Bayelsa United appeals punishment, pleads to IMC to ignore goals, points deduction

Jidechi Chidiezie 21:51 - 06.02.2023

On Match Day 5 of NPFL, an assistant referee was attacked in Bayelsa United's home fixture with Doma United.

Nigeria Premier Football League side Bayelsa United has appealed the decision to punish them taken by the Interim Management Committee (IMC), following an assault of an assistant referee at the Samson Siasia Stadium.

An official review of the match report from the Match Day 5 NPFL fixture between Bayelsa United and Doma United on Wednesday, February 1, found the Yenegoa-based club guilty of contravening the league's rules.

What did IMC's earlier memo to Bayelsa United say?

In the memo conveying Bayelsa United sanctions, the club was charged with breaches of Rules B8:21, C11 and B13:52.

The club was fined N1 million for failing to deny access to unauthorised persons in all prohibited areas and, an additional N500,000 for breaching Rule B8:21 by failing to ensure proper protection for match officials during and after the match.

As punishment for the assault on a match official, the IMC also ordered Bayelsa United to pay a fine of N250,000, which will serve as compensation for Assistant Referee 2, Ojeleye Ebenezer, who was attacked. The IMC also directed the deduction of three points and three goals from the team's total points and goals.

Additionally, Bayelsa United are to ensure that a certain Mr Joseph Zidougha (also known as One Man Riot) is immediately prosecuted for the assault on the match official.

Bayelsa United appeals sanction

According to reports, the club in its appeal explained that contrary to Match Day 5 allegation levelled against them, they had provided funds to the Bayelsa State Football Association to ensure that security and other related logistics were on the ground during the match.

Bayelsa United's Samson Siasia Stadium

“The State FA provided 35 police officers for the purpose of ensuring enhanced security at the stadium which was much more than the 30 earlier agreed on by both teams in the pre-match meeting.

“Preliminary report by the Nigeria Police Force that were on the ground indicates that the assault on the match official, assistant referee two; Ojeleye Ebenezer was the action of a hoodlum who deceitfully gained access to the area pretending to be a local aid and guide of the visiting team.

“He also accompanied the visiting team to the pre-match meetings and to the stadium for the match, hence reasonably convinced everyone that he was rendering assistance to them, thereby hiding his intent and purpose” Bayelsa United stated in its appeal.

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Based on their argument and in accordance with Rule E of the Framework and Rules of the NPFL, Bayelsa sought to have the N1 million fine imposed against them for failing to provide proper security reversed.

It also wants the 500,000 Naira fine that was imposed against it for failing to ensure that access to all areas was restricted to authorised people to be revoked.

Furthermore, it was requested that the N250,000 paid as compensation for the assault on Ojeleye Ebenezer be reviewed and that the ruling removing 3 points and 3 goals from Bayelsa United's total points and goals for the match official's assault be revoked in the spirit of fairness and equity.

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