Friday, June 26, 2009

Why Sharks FC Can’t Sack Ikhana Yet

Indications have emerged on why Sharks Football Club cannot afford to sack its manager, Kadiri Ikhana, after the one-time African Coach of the Year was purportedly relieved of his duty recently.
A source inside the club told that the Rivers State Sports Ministry, which oversees Sharks FC and newly-promoted Premier League side, Dolphins Football Club, had entered into an agreement with Ikhana that in event of termination of contract from either party that the defaulter would pay the affected party.
The informer further disclosed that the premature termination of Ikhana’s contract on June 15 came as a surprise to the state’s sports ministry, which quickly intervened after the state government summoned the General Manager of the club, Okey Kpalukwu, for taking such drastic decision without contacting his superior in the ministry.
It was also learnt that if the sack had been withheld, Ikhana would have been paid an undisclosed sum of amount that could probably run into millions of naira since Sharks FC would have defaulted in its agreement.
“When Ikhana was reported to have been sacked, the man behind that arrangement failed to take in cognisance that Sharks would have run into trouble because Ikhana would have been holding out to be paid millions of naira since it was Sharks that terminated the deal. That was why the sports ministry in Rivers State and even the state government had to summon the general manager of the club to explain his rationale for sacking Ikhana. He was also asked if he had the money in place to pay off Ikhana,” our source said.
It was also revealed that there was an internal rift between Ikhana and Kpalukwu, which led to his earlier sack.
But club secretary, Cyril Dum Wite, said Sharks FC has put behind the episode and is concentrating on the Federation Cup (formerly known as the FA Cup).
Wite told that Ikhana does not want to dwell on the whole saga and would rather want to concentrate on the Federation Cup in a bid to win Sharks FC a trophy.
It would be recalled that the club scribe had told an online football website in Nigeria when the story broke of Ikhana’s sack that the whole dimension through which the sack came about was unauthorised.
“The press release was not signed and he was not privy to Kadiri Ikhana’s contract so how could he sack him? Then again Kadiri signed a season long contract with Sharks so if you sack him before the end of the season are you going to pay him off without the knowledge of the same Rivers State government who pay his wages?” Wite asked.
“I believe he was just uninformed and the decision to do away with the crew was hasty and unprofessional.”

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