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LMC says referees welfare always paramount

Chairman of the League Management Company (LMC), Shehu Dikko has restated that safety and welfare of all persons at match venues counts high and this…

Chairman of the League Management Company (LMC), Shehu Dikko has restated that safety and welfare of all persons at match venues counts high and this includes that of Match Officials which he said is of paramount importance to the league body.

Dikko was clarifying the misconception contained in a letter to him by the President of the Nigeria Referees Association (NRA), Tade Azeez which suggested that the LMC neglected to order compensation for the match officials assaulted at the Sani Abacha Stadium by some misguided fans after the Match Day 18 fixture between Kano Pillars and Akwa United.

The LMC Chairman said it would be wrong to create an impression that assault on match officials has been a regular feature of the NPFL, and pointed out that the incident in Kano was just the second on-field incident that affected match officials with the first being on Match Day 1 in Enugu in the match between Rangers International and Abia Warriors. 

In this case the LMC fined Rangers N250,000 as compensation to the Match Commissioner who was the victim in addition to any certified medical expenses that may arise.

In the Match Day 12 incidence in Nnewi, the LMC investigated the report and found that the attack on the match officials could have been a robbery as it happened on their way to the motor park a day after the match and wrote to warn FC IfeanyiUbah that Referees must be protected until they depart the city. The Match officials’ reports also supported this finding.

Dikko further corrected the erroneous impression that the compensation for the Match Officials assaulted in Kano on Sunday were not covered by the sanctions announced on Tuesday. 

“This was indeed  the second charge in the Summary Jurisdiction notice issued Kano Pillars and which read, “You are in breach of Rule C1 of the Framework and Rules of the Nigeria Professional League Football League, in that on Sunday, 9th April, 2017, immediately after your Match Day 18 Fixture: Kano Pillars FC vs. Akwa United FC, some of your stewards and supporters assaulted match officials (including the Referee, the First Assistant Referee, the Second Assistant Referee and the Fourth Official), thereby failing to comply with the principles of fair play and sportsmanship.

“We went ahead to fine Kano Pillars N1m for this breach and impose the payment of compensation of N250, 000 for each of the four match officials in addition to any verified medical cost that the injured officials may bring. This was contained in paragraph B of the Summary Jurisdiction notice issued to Kano Pillars,” Dikko further stated.


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