NNL Matchday 12: J. Atete Fans Attack Bayelsa United Officials, Journalists
By Hananeel Jackson
The resumption of the second stanza of the Nigeria National League, NNL was characterized by a show of shame in the encounter between J. Atete and Bayelsa United in group B2 of the Southern Conference at the Otujeremi Stadium on Saturday as hoodlums and fanatic supporters of the home side invaded the pitch and attacked officials and journalists attached to the away team.
The home team took the lead just before the half time when Bayelsa United defence line failed to mark Edewor Godstime whose pass was slot in by Samson Edja.
Having failed to impress in the first half, Technical Adviser of Bayelsa United Diepreye Teibowei introduced Okardi Inikurogha to replace returnee Sunday Oweyemi, Victory Beniangba for Anderson West and Ebitimi Agogu for Favour Martins.
Thereafter the Yenagoa based side continued to mount pressure on J. Atete after the injection of fresh legs into the game with scintillating passes as the display paid off for Bayelsa United when Dafe Stephen brought down Okardi Inikurogha at the of edge of eighteen yard box.
Ebitimi Agogu stepped forward to take the set-piece as Victory Beniangba header restored parity for Bayelsa United on 73 minutes but the equalizer gingered what turned out to be war as an undressed player identified as Uche Otuyah and fans of the Ughelli based side forced themselves onto the pitch and attacked officials of Bayelsa United and journalists covering the game.
Africa Independent Television, AIT camera was damaged by the J. Atete Secretary while smart phones from Bayelsa United officials were stolen by the home fans. The phones have yet to be recovered as of the time of filling this report.
Fifteen minutes later, the center referee ordered the game to continue even as normalcy was yet to return in the stadium as hoodlums around the stadium threatened the referee with different signs, such “Give us our three points or you die here”
“No security for una”, “Make we see how you manage comot this Stadium” amongst other threats.
Three minutes into game the second half, the center referee awarded a penalty to the hosts as the goalkeeper Joke Efewula stepped forward to send Bayelsa United shot stopper the wrong way. Two minutes later, the referee abruptly ended the game with ten minutes left to play.
Bayelsa United will next face Crown Fc of Ogomosho on Sunday at the Samson Siasia Stadium in Yenagoa while J. Atete travel to Nnewi to slug it out with Godosky Fc.