The New Times (Kigali)

14 December 2012

Rwanda: Ntagwabira's Ban Reduced to Two Years

The Football Association (Ferwafa) has reduced Jean Marie Ntagwabira's ban from five years to two.

The ban was slapped on the former Amavubi assistant coach after being found guilty of match-fixing.

Ferwafa's ethics and legal committee composed Emmanuel Mahame Itamwa [chairman], Jules Mabano [vice] and Janvier Muhoza [secretary general], which met on December 11, said in a statement that Ntagwabira will now serve a two-year suspension after hearing his appeal. This means the ban ends on July 7, 2014.

According to the committee, Ntagwabira's ban was reduced because this was the first time he had been implicated in such an act, being the first person through a press conference to admit bribing players, which facilitated the legal committee to punish him.

The former Rwandan international shocked football fraternity in July when he confessed to bribing Rayon players to throw away a league game against SC Kiyovu in 2009.

He admitted to using Issa Kayinamura to bribe a couple of players, whose identities remain a secret, to underperform. The encounter ended 3-2 in favour of Kiyovu which Ntagwabira coached at the time.

Kiyovu finished fourth that season but moved to third following the withdrawal from the league of Atraco.

The 38-year old is the only coach to have won the national football league with two different clubs APR (4) and Atraco (1), and is rated by many as the best ever Rwandan coach.

He was Dujkovic Ratomir's assistant in 2004 when Rwanda made its maiden appearance at the finals tournament of the African Cup of Nations held in Tunisia.

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