By Kunle Adedoyin
The League Management Company (LMC) has handed Kano Pillars captain, Rabiu Ali, a 12-match ban for his role in the crowd disturbances and harassment of match Referees in one of the fixtures of Matchday 4 of the Nigeria Professional Football League(NPFL) Championship Playoff.
Also, the LMC has fined Kano Pillars FC Eight million Naira (N8m) for similar offences and ordered that the club plays three home matches behind closed doors and a suspended three points deduction. The club’s supporters at the Agege Township Stadium-venue for the playoffs invaded the pitch, damaged perimeter fences and advertising panels while hauling objects at the VIP stands at the end of the fixture in protest against some of the decisions of the referee in the club’s match against Enugu Rangers, which ended 1-1.
According to npfl.ng, the League Management Company (LMC) in a summary jurisdiction notice charged Kano Pillars with a four-count breach of the Framework and Rules of the NPFL including breaches of Rule B13.18, C9, C1.1.
Rabiu Ali was charged for accosting the Referee and in so doing incited others to commit acts of violence and misconduct in breach of Rule C1.3.
The notice to Ali read, “consequently, and taking into consideration your role as the captain of the team, by which your conduct is deemed to be an aggravated breach, with a view to imposing more severe sanctions pursuant to Rule C19, the LMC intends to exercise its summary jurisdiction and to impose on you the following sanction: a ban from all NPFL matches and activities for a period of twelve (12) matches, commencing immediately”.
In the charges against Kano Pillars, the breaches covered offenses such as the hauling of objects towards the field of play by some of its supporters in violation of Rule B13.18.
Kano Pillars were also charged for failing to control and ensure proper conduct of its players and officials who accosted the match Referee in protest which constituted a breach of Rule C9.
The third charge read, “you are in breach of Rule B13.18 of the Framework and Rules of the Nigeria Professional Football League, in that on Monday, 10th June 2019, immediately after your NPFL Championship Playoff Match: Kano Pillars vs. Rangers International, some of your supporters encroached onto the field of play, pursuing after match officials”.