Mali-born Gaye Alassane, a naturalised former S-League player, will have his Singaporean citizenship revoked for his alleged involvement in an international match-fixing scandal.
Alassane, 43, who played as a defender for Wellington FC, Tampine Rovers and Gombak United, among other teams, was first detained in 2013 for a period of two years as part of a sweeping crackdown on match-fixing groups.
The former footballer obtained Singaporean citizenship in 2003, after marrying an employee of the Football Association of Singapore (FAS).
On Thursday, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) said that a 43-year-old man of African origin was served with a Notice of Proposed Deprivation of Citizenship. It's understood that the notice was directed to Alassane.
According to a report by ChannelNewsAsia, it’s believed that Alassane and his syndicate members used Singapore as a hub to conduct major global match-fixing activities, conspiring in various countries through the corruption of officials and players.
He also moved bribe money for his syndicate into Singapore to facilitate match-fixing activities.
While the investigation is still underway, the MHA declared: "This individual's serious criminal conduct not only undermined the integrity of Singapore's financial system, but also law and order.
"Witnesses were afraid of testifying against the individual and his syndicate members in open court for fear of reprisal."
Alassane, a father of two, is currently under a police supervision order.
A national football official, interviewed by Singapore newspaper Today, said: "I didn’t know about his background and private life but I feel sad for his kids. His son is a talented footballer."
According to the IBTimes, Alassane can still apply for his case to be referred to a Citizenship Committee of Inquiry.
If his citizenship is indeed revoked, since Singapore doesn’t allow dual citizenship, he will be stateless.
Alassane will need to stay in Singapore on a special pass granted by the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority; however, he won’t be able to enjoy citizenship privileges and won’t be allowed to apply for a passport.