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FIFA hammer dangles on Gombe United over N13m owed Cooreman


FIFAFormer Gombe United Coach, Maurice Cooreman, has threatened to resort to FIFA for help following the club’s alleged refusal to adhere to the world body’s judgment compelling the club to pay him his salary arrears and other entitlements totaling more than N13 million.

Cooreman, a Belgian, left Gombe United in 2014 on health grounds, but he said he was forced to take the club to FIFA after trying fruitlessly to retrieve the salary arrears and other emoluments owed him by the club.

According to Cooreman, FIFA appointed a single judge from its players status committee, Mr. Geoff Thompson of England, to look at his case.. The judge notified Gombe United of the issues raised by Cooreman and after deliberating on it, he awarded the Belgian N10 million and an interest of 0.5 per cent per annum effective from December 9, 2014.

In the ruling signed by FIFA’s Acting Secretary General, Marco Villiger, the body also ordered Gombe amounting to pay to Cooreman N2.5 million at five per cent interest effective December 9, 2014 until the date of effective payment.

Gombe United was also fined 25,000 euros as administrative fee, which must be paid to FIFA 30 days after the judgment.The case was decided on February 8, 2016.

Cooreman told The Guardian at the weekend that since the judgment in his favour, the Gombe team has been ‘dribbling me’ with all sorts of excuses.

Cooreman, who spoke through his agent, said, “I served Gombe United to the best of my ability, but I am surprised by the way they are treating this issue. Even with all the notifications and calls, they still don’t care. It is unfortunate that I have to take this step to collect my money.”

When contacted on the issue, Gombe United Chairman, Awalu Musa, said his club was aware of the judgment, adding that they would settle Cooreman ‘as soon as our finances improve.’

He said: “We got a letter from the NFF on the same issue, but we are settling our debts gradually. In fact, we have settled more than 100 people for the debts we inherited and I can assure you that we will pay Cooreman once we get the money.”

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