Wikki Tourists call for review of sanctions imposed over hooliganism

Wikki Tourists Football Club (FC) of Bauchi has appealed to the Interim Management Committee (IMC) to review the sanctions against the club over the 2022/2023 Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) between the club and Bayelsa United FC.

Sporting Tribune reports that the Match Day 13 fixtures between Wikki Tourists FC and Bayelsa United at Abubakar Tafawa Balewa Stadium (ATBS), Bauchi, on April 9, was marred by fans’ hooliganism.

The IMC in its ruling after a review of the match incident, imposed a three-point deduction, goals deduction, ₦2.5 million fine against Wikki Tourists, in addition to having the stadium closed to all NPFL matches.

Reacting, Mr. Balarabe Douglas, the Chairman of Wikki Tourists FC, made the appeal in an interview over the weekend in Bauchi.

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He said the IMC accused Wikki management of not providing adequate security, throwing objects in the field, and assaulting match officials of the match between visiting Bayelsa United and Wikki FC.

“The management provides adequate security for the match in the stadium with over 40 police personnel, Man O’War, and WAI brigade physically on ground.

“There wasn’t any object throwing of such nature, we noticed at the end of the match some angry fans started throwing sachets and plastic bottles of water at Wikki players to show their displeasure over the poor performances of the players and it abruptly stopped.

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“Similarly, none of the match officials, visiting team, and players were targeted or assaulted during the match,” he said.

Douglas added that they admitted that the match was put on hold for a moment when the aggrieved players of Wikki FC were protesting peacefully to the match officials for the cancellation of their earned second goal pursuant to the decision of ARI.

“The aggrieved players return for the continuation of the match after a polite explanation by the officials on the reason for cancellation.

“With these explanations, the IMC should reason and review the sanctions because the decision reached by the club is not only harsh but worrisome,” he said.

Meanwhile, the chairman said the club is yet to formally receive the resignation of the club’s Technical Adviser, Abdullahi Adamu.

Douglas insisted that he and members of the club’s board only saw the resignation letter on social media like other Nigerians.