THE APPOINTMENT of Frenchman Patrice Neveu as Togo's National Football Coach went up in smoke in Lomé last Monday when the Togo government suddenly decided not to go ahead with the ceremony of the signature of the contract.
Togolese Minister for Sports, Richard Attipoe told journalists at the ceremony at the Ministry for Youth and Sports last Monday evening, “We have decided not to go ahead with the signature of the contract due to new developments”. But he did not give details.
Frenchman Neveu, who was at the ceremony expressed shock at the sudden turn of events, saying, “I came to Lomé for the contract to be signed.
But if the Togolese authorities have decided to do otherwise, I have no choice but to withdraw”.
The new President of the Togolese Football Federation, Tata Avlessi accompanied by the Secretary General Espoir Komlan Assogbavie later said on a National Togo Television sports programme that he and his new Federation Executives did not think that the time was “appropriate to appoint a new Coach for the Togo National Team.”
“We had only gone to pay a courtesy call on the Sports Minister when by chance we walked into a contract signing ceremony,” Avlessi said.
“We told the Sports Minister that we were not in his office to witness the signing of a contract for a new national football Coach, the new Federation President said.
“We have just been elected into office barely a week, and we think that we should go step by step, and slowly to hold dialogue and consultations over such matters,” Tata Avlessi declared.