Peter Dada, Akure
Duke Udi has said he has been resting at home since the Ondo State Government asked him to “step aside” as Sunshine Stars coach.
Commissioner for Sports, Saka Yusuf-Ogunleye, said in a statement on Tuesday Udi was fired following allegations of “gross misconduct, insubordination and disrespect for constituted authorities”. The team’s former coach Henry Abiodun was appointed as the new manager of the struggling Akure Premier League side.
However, Yusuf-Ogunleye told reporters in Akure on Wednesday that the state government, who owns the club, did not sack Udi, saying the former Nigeria midfielder is still an employee of the state government.
According to him, they only asked the former Israel-based player to step aside to allow another person manage the team.
However, Udi told our correspondent on the telephone on Thursday that, as of the time of the conversation, he was no longer with the team.
He said, “I don’t know the meaning of step aside, I think the commissioner should be able to answer that. I am in my house and somebody else is doing the job so what is the meaning of step aside? That is what people should ask him (commissioner). Step aside, is it a contract or what? Every coach that has stepped aside never came back. Is it in your contract or what? “
On his contract with the club, the former Switzerland-based player insisted that the club had not fulfilled their part of the agreement they signed with him.
Udi said, “They have not paid me the money I was to be given for helping them escape relegation and some match bonuses. I am not fighting anybody. They should just honour the agreement we signed, there are documents we signed and they should do their own part.”
Meanwhile, the Chairman of the ODSFA, Tajudeen Akinyemi and Yusuf-Ogunleye, on Thursday held a meeting with the employees of the agency, reassuring them that Sunshine’s welfare and success remain the priority of the government.
Yusuf-Ogunleye said, ”Your coach (Duke Udi) has not been sacked, he was asked to step aside pending the determination of issues against him and I want to tell you that the decision taken at the moment is in the best interest of the team.
“I can assure you that the government is very much interested in your success and will do everything possible to take care of your welfare.”
All rights reserved. This material, and other digital content on this website, may not be reproduced, published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or in part without prior express written permission from PUNCH.
Contact: [email protected]