‘Pay the laborer his wages before his sweat dries’ is an advice from the holy books.
That, however, is not the case with the Super Eagles as the full prize money due to the team for their third-place finish at the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations is yet to be paid almost two months after the competition in Egypt.
It is understood that the Super Eagles are not alone in this mess as the top three teams at the last Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) Final in Egypt are yet to be paid in full.
The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), which is due a payment of $2 million (over N700m) – for reaching the semi-finals – has received only $600,000, since beating Tunisia on July 18, in the tournament’s third-place match.
Insideworldfootball reports that in a letter written to the NFF by the Confederation of African Football (CAF) in mid-August, a payment of $800,000 was made, which consisted of a $600,000 AFCON payment, with the remaining $200,000 being the annual grant for member associations due from CAF.
“We have written to CAF, asking for clarifications on the money that was paid to us,” an authoritative NFF source told Insideworldfootball.
“It is quite odd that it is getting close to two months since we played at the AFCON in Egypt and we are yet to receive our prize money. It is a rather unusual situation for which we require an explanation.”
Reports from winners Algeria and Tunisia, which placed fourth, both due the sums of $4.5 million and $2 million, also indicate that they haven’t been paid in full.
The situation with the AFCON teams reflects an even worse situation for Esperance Sportive de Tunis, the current holders of the Champions League.
They are yet to receive their winners’ cheque of $2.5 million, despite being awarded the title by CAF’s Disciplinary Committee in August, after Morocco’s Wydad abandoned the May 31 final at Rades.
There are suggestions that CAF is facing a cash crunch and that has led to these delays.
At the moment, it is not clear just how long the Super Eagles and others due to being paid by the Africa football governing body will have to wait.