A former Super Eagles assistant coach, Sylvanus Okpala, has been excluded from coaches that were slated to be paid outstanding salaries by the Nigeria Football Federation, with the football body insisting they are not owing the former international.
Last week, Chairman, Media Committee of the NFF, Emeka Inyama, announced that the federation would pay Eagles coach, Stephen Keshi, the four months’ salary owed him.
He added that coaches who were no longer with the national teams, but were being owed salaries, would also be paid.
Inyamah told Goal.com last week, “The outstanding salaries of coaches of all the national teams including those who are no longer with us are being processed and will be paid by next week at the latest. The Federal Government has approved some money but the money has to follow some processes before it is finally paid to us. That is what has delayed the payment of John Obuh’s salaries and the rest.”
Okpala was sacked by the federation after helping Nigeria win a third Africa Cup of Nations title in South Africa last year. He had his match allowances slashed by 50 per cent during the AFCON tournament.
The former Green Eagles captain has complained about the unlawful termination of his contract – which would have ended in 2014 – by the federation.
Okpala, who was sacked on April 1, 2013, said that the NFF also refused to pay him for the month of March 2013.
But Inyamah told our correspondent on the telephone on Monday that the federation did not owe Okpala.
“We are paying all the coaches that are being owed. Is Okpala saying we owe him? Okpala left the team after the Nations Cup (in 2013) and coaches were not owed then. So, why bring up Okpala issue,” Inyamah said.
But Okpala expressed optimism that he would be paid all his entitlements by the federation at the appropriate time.
He said, “My stand in the past few weeks has made them pay the coaches they didn’t want to pay in the last two years. So, definitely I will get my own; nothing will stop me from getting my money. At the appropriate time, I will triumph.”
Meanwhile, our correspondent also learnt that “John Obuh and the rest” have not received their bank alerts. Obuh is allegedly being owed N22m salary arrears by the federation.
One of the “rest” coaches, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said they were yet to be paid their outstanding salaries.
“We have not received any alert yet but we are still hoping,” our source said.