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Report clubs owing you allowances before new season starts, NFF tells NPFL players

Report clubs owing you allowances before new season starts, NFF tells NPFL players
September 21
15:15 2022

The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) has warned players in the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) against signing attestation forms if they are being owed by clubs.

The warning was relayed in a recent circular released by Davidson Owumi, chief executive officer (CEO) of NPFL.

The league has battled issues of unpaid player allowances and wages by clubs.

In January, players of Heartland United of Owerri took to the streets with placards and solidarity songs to demand 11 months unpaid salary.

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According to the circular, players appending signatures to the attestation form exonerates clubs from the responsibility of the arrears owed.

“Note that the player registration exercise for the 2022/2023 season of the Nigeria Professional Football League is still ongoing. Be therefore informed that any contract player who signs an attestation document in furtherance of their registration may be estopped from making any further claims against the club involved,” the circular reads.

“Note that the attestation document which is a requirement for the registration of contract players is intended to help the league registration officers clarify the non-indebtedness of clubs to players. Therefore, a player who signs the attestation document discharges his club of liability for overdue payables to clear a pathway for registration.

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“Players and their intermediaries or representatives are therefore advised on the implication of signing attestation documents, as players will from henceforth be held accountable for endorsements made in the stated document. Players are therefore enjoined to be professional in the discharge of their contractual obligations to their employers/clubs at all times, in order to be legally and justifiably grounded in their claims for overdue payables.

“Without prejudice to the above, ALL football clubs should note that nothing in the foregoing paragraphs shall constitute a waiver of their contractual obligation to their players as stated in Rule 89.45 of the Framework and Rules of the Nigeria Professional Football League.”

Speaking with TheCable, Owumi said the directive is enshrined in the NPFL framework and it will “help the system”.

He said the registration of reported clubs will be halted until they can fulfil their contractual obligations.

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“If a player of a particular club tells us that he’s being owed, we would stop the registration of such a club until we find out why those players are being owed and when something can be done about it. We are trying to introduce something that will help the system here,” he told TheCable.

“If a club is owing about 17 players, how do you want to register such a club? Club licencing means that both clubs and players shout meet their contractual obligation.”

TheCable had reported that the ministry of sports declared LMC “illegal” and unrecognised by the federal government.

The ministry said the status of the LMC is “outside the purview of the statutes of the NFF”.

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However, the matter has been dragged to court with the final judgement yet to be pronounced.

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