Fans blame Akeredolu as financial crisis cripples Sunshine

Posted on Dec 13 2017 - 5:36am by admin

Festus Abu  and Peter Dada

A number of Sunshine Stars supporters are allegedly preparing for battle with the Ondo State Government over the financial crisis which has affected  the Premier League club’s preparations  ahead of the upcoming season.

The  state government-owned  Akure club  are neither  active in the transfer market nor involved in any serious preseason action.

Sunshine are reportedly owing many  of their  players salaries and match allowances for some months.

One of our correspondents learnt that some of the coaches and backroom staff  have also not been  paid.

It was learnt that there have been silent protests in the club with the players  and the management of the club  allegedly  at dagger’s drawn.

Sources close to the team, who managed to retain their Premier League status at the end of last season, said  all efforts  being made by the  new chairman of the  Ondo State Football Agency Tajudeen Akinyemi  to persuade the state government to release money to the club have yielded no dividends so far.

However, the officials of the ODSFA and  supporters of the club, who spoke to our correspondents, blamed Governor Rotimi Akeredolu  for Sunshine’s economic  predicament.

Sources close to  ODSFA   claimed  that  the  allocation  for the club  was being delayed because  Akeredolu  had not attended to the paperwork  submitted to his office.

 “There is nothing the management of Sunshine  can  do about this matter because the  governor has failed to release money,” an official, who spoke on condition of anonymity,     told one of our correspondents on Tuesday.

“It is true that the club is having poor preparations ahead the next league season, many good players have left and we are not buying new ones.

“The remaining players are owed salaries by the club  but the management are helpless as  there is no money to pay them. Our chairman has written to the governor about the situation of the club but nothing has come out of it.”

One of the supporters, who identified himself simply  as Raymond,  said, “We have  not signed new players, and  some of our  good players have abandoned us for  other clubs. Judging from what we have now, relegation is sure for Sunshine next season.”

It was learnt that some of the fans of the club are planning to  march through the streets of Akure in protest against the state government’s failure to give the club money to pay their players and recruit new ones.

The  Public Relations Officer of Sunshine  supporters’ club Olakunle Komolafe  lamented the situation of the team.

He said, “Honestly we are not happy with what is going on at  Sunshine and  we have held different meetings on the matter. We  met with the chairman and he promised us that everything would  be fine.

“We are not preparing very well, we have not participated in any preseason competition because there is no money. We have not played many friendly matches, so what kind  of preparation are we having? We believe it is the government that is not funding the team. We have to appeal to the government to release funds for them.”

Spokesman for  Sunshine  Chris Okunnuwa said the management  had made adequate preparations for the team to have a good outing in the coming season .

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