Enugu Rangers Why former coach Imama Amapakabo was arrested by Enugu State Government

Since his sacking, Amapakabo has been at loggerheads with the club which led to his arrest on Wednesday.

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Rangers title aspiration still on course, says Coach play Imama Amapakabo (Sundiata Post)
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The biggest story in the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) this week has been the arrest of former Enugu Rangers coach Imama Amapakabo following his disagreement with the management of the club.

Amapakabo, in 2016 led Enugu Rangers to their first NPFL title- their first league trophy in 32 years- but was fired following a string of poor results this season.

Since his sacking, Amapakabo has been at loggerheads with the club which led to his arrest on Wednesday, July 19.

The coach was arrested in Abuja after a meeting between him, the Enugu Rangers and the League Management Company, (LMC) organisers of the NPFL.

He was immediately taken to the Enugu before he was released on Thursday.

Why he was arrested

Enugu Rangers are claiming that Amapakabo was arrested for allegedly refusing to return the club’s car and the key to a three bedroom he was given when he was coach of the club.

Rangers General Manager Christian Chukwu claimed that Amapakabo was arrested by the Enugu State Government who are the owners of the club. 

 "He left with the keys to the flat he was given and the official car. We wrote to him at least five times to return the property, but he ignored all our letters,” Chukwu said.

For his role in the case, the LMC have announced that Chukwu has been suspended from all NPFL activities pending his appearance before the Ethics Committee of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF).

The LMC had referred to the NFF Ethics Committee the matter of Chukwu's conduct in the dispute resolution proceedings between Rangers & their former coach, Imama Amapakabo,” LMC said in a statement.

Amapakabo admitted that he is holding on to just the car of the club while waiting for Enugu Rangers to pay him his final settlement and outstanding wages and bonuses.

Two sides

Amapakabo believes he was fired unlawfully by Enugu Rangers and is claiming a compensation to the tune of N38m- which includes full payment for the remainder of his contract with the club, outstanding two months’ salary, N600 000 in outstanding allowances and bonuses, $940 international travelling allowance and N16 million as damages for breach of contract.

While Rangers are claiming that Amapakabo was fired for 'failure to perform' which is included in his contract clause, the coach’s defence is that Enugu Rangers first failed to keep up with the ‘failure of management to provide adequate motivation including payment of allowances and salaries when due’.

According to Amapakabo, the club’s failure to pay their players brought about a lack of motivation which led to the poor results he was blamed for.

Gernot Rohr, Imama Amapakabo and Alloy Agu play

Gernot Rohr, Imama Amapakabo and Alloy Agu

(Twitter/OgaNlaMedia)

 

The LMC have also ruled in the favour of Amapakabo on the basis that Enugu Rangers do not have sufficient proof to fire the coach for ‘failure to perform’

When Pulse Sports reached out to Amapakabo, the coach revealed that he is fine and just looking forward to the Super Eagles Team B camp in Kano which opens on Monday, July 24.

Amapakabo is part of the Super Eagles coaching crew in charge of the Super Eagles home-based players ahead of their 2018 African Nations Championship (CHAN) qualifiers in Kano against either Togo or Benin Republic.

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