Thursday, September 08, 2011

Inquest takes off on NPL ‘match-fixing’

An investigation would take off into allegations that Nigeria Premier League (NPL) leaders, Sunshine Stars made contact with the match officials before their rescheduled game against Lobi Stars.

The process of findings will start on September 21 when both Premier League clubs appear before the Disciplinary Committee of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) over allegations of match-fixing.

Secretary of the NFF Disciplinary Committee, Tunde Aderibigbe said on Thursday that the committee would listen to all the parties involved in the case at the federation's secretariat in Abuja.

The referees appointment committee has also been invited to appear on same day to explain its position in the allegations.

Aderibigbe said the match officials will also make appearances before the committee on the allegations levelled against them.

“We are inviting the two clubs involved, the match officials as well as the Referees Appointment Committee to state their own sides of the story at our meeting on September 21. It is a serious allegation and we have to get to the root of the matter,” said Aderibigbe.

On September 1, Sunshine Stars secured a point from Lobi Stars after it ended 1 – 1 at the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa Stadium in Bauchi.

Lobi Stars' chairman, Dominic Iorfa in the aftermath of the game accused Sunshine Stars of breaching the rules in order to ensure that the match officials compromise in decision-making during the match.

Iorfa also claimed that he had evidence to show that Sunshine Stars breached the rules.

He alleged that he caught the match officials travelling to the match centre - Bauchi - in a vehicle belonging to Sunshine Stars.

Iorfa, has learned, produced pictures of the match officials as his evidence, which Sunshine Stars general manager, Mike Idoko has debunked.

Sunshine Stars currently lead the Premier League with 64 points ahead of Dolphins on same number of points but edge the latter on superior goals difference.

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