The Ethics Committee of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) yesterday slammed a one-year ban from all football-related activities on Super Eagles’ Chief Coach, Salisu Yusuf after adjudging him guilty of corruption in the discharge of his duties.
Yusuf was brought before the Ethics Committee by the NFF following revelations by an undercover reporter that he took $1000 bribe from the reporters, who posed as agents to two home-based players.
The coach was caught in video by the reporters, who also promised to reward him if the players, Osas Okoro of Enugu Rangers and Kano Pillars’ Rabiu Alli made his team to the last CHAN In Morocco.
The NFF Ethics Committee also said in a statement made available to The Guardian, “The coach must also pay a fine in the sum of $5,000 to the Federation within three months.”
In its report submitted to the NFF Secretariat on Tuesday, days after inviting the coach to state his own side of matters, the Committee, chaired by Mallam Nuhu Ribadu, said it “established from the admission of Coach Salisu Yusuf and also found as a fact from the documentary and video evidence before it, that he accepted the cash gift of $1,000 offered by Tigers Player’s Agency, an undercover reporter, purportedly interested in acting on behalf of Players Osas Okoro and Rabiu Ali, for their inclusion in the list of players for 2018 CHAN Competition in Morocco;
“The Committee found as a fact that it was not an error of judgment on the part of Coach Salisu Yusuf but a conscious and deliberate decision to have accepted the cash gift of $1,000 from the decoy player agent/undercover reporter, purportedly interested in acting on behalf of Players Osas Okoro and Rabiu Ali, even though the evidence before the Committee did not establish that his conduct influenced the choice of the two players;
“That the two players could have made the team to 2018 CHAN Competition in Morocco on the basis of their talent and performance;
“That Coach Salisu Yusuf did not accept the offer of 15 per cent of the anticipated transfer fees of the said players, as there was no follow –up action on the promise.”
It added that the coach’s act, which was widely published on the British Broadcasting Corporation, has a damaging effect on the reputation and integrity of Nigerian football, adding that he ought to have conducted himself more professionally in line with the Code of Conduct signed alongside his Contract with the NFF, as his conduct in public and in secret should be exemplary, since coaches are role models.
It added: “In accordance with Art. 22, FIFA Disciplinary Code, he is hereby banned for the period of one year, from partaking or involvement or participation in any football related activity, effective from the date of this decision. He is also fined in the sum of $5,000 to be paid within three (3) months of the date of this decision…” The Committee also ruled that an appeal against the decision could be made to the NFF Appeals Committee.