Sports

FIFA sanction former Gabonese U17 coach, others over sexual abuse of minors

The independent Ethics Committee of the International Federation of Association Football (FIFA) has sanctioned former Gabonese U17 coach Patrick Assoumou Eyi, President of La Ligue de Football de l’Estuair, Serge Ahmed Mombo, and two Gabonese coaches Triphel Mabicka and Orphée Mickala over sexual assault on minors The Trumpet gathered.

The incident happened in December last year when local media alleged that U17 Gabonese coach was sexually assaulting minors and young footballers which spurred the Ethics Committee to swing into action by launching a preliminary investigation.

According to The Guardian, several of Eyi’s victims reported being abused by the former Gabonese U17 coach who later became the technical director for La Ligue de l’Estuaire, the country’s highest league, necessitated the International players union (Fifpro) to register a complaint to FIFA.

“Our preliminary inquiries yielded consistent evidence from credible witnesses who all tell of an ongoing and long-embedded practice of forcing young players into sexual relationships as a pre-condition for footballing opportunities,” Fifpro said.

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“If these allegations are indeed true, it is yet further evidence that football is being consistently exploited, across leagues and continents, as a forum for abusers to access, groom, extort and assault players. More must be done to prevent this horrific abuse and we call on football’s governing bodies to act as a matter of urgency,” the players union added.

After a review of the degree of allegations, the chairman of the Disciplinary and Ethics Committee directed that the scope of the investigation be broadened which saw Serge Ahmed Mombo, Triphel Mabicka and Orphée Mickala indicted.

Following the investigation by the disciplinary organ of the world football governing body, Mambo, Mabicka, and Mickala have been suspended from partaking in all football-related activities for 90 days while Eyi who was suspended on December 17, 2022, by the Gabonese FA has his sanction exacerbated to have a global effect.

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