The Foundation stone laid by Lionel Messi in Gabon for the construction of the stadium has been reportedly stolen by an unidentified man.

A faceless man is claiming to be in possession of the foundation stone which was laid over the weekend by Argentine striker, Lionel Messi in Gabon. The man is reportedly demanding for the sum of 3m CFA as a condition to return it.

It would be recalled that Messi was recently in Gabon on the request of the President to lay the first stone of a new stadium, the Port-Gentil stadium which will host African Cup of Nations Matches in 2017. Messi was reportedly paid 3.5 Million Pounds for that event.

Messi’s trip to Gabon made the social media go agog with many Gabonese questioning the cost of the visit to the oil-rich country where over a third of the population lives below the poverty line.

The influential “France Football” further fed the controversy Monday by alleging the Barcelona star had received 3.5 million euros ($3.8 million) for the trip, a claim denied by Gabonese authorities.

“The Republic of Gabon denies having paid, or even promised to pay, such a sum of money to the Argentinian international footballer Lionel Messi,” the presidency said in a statement.

The Gaboneses authorities are yet to make an official statement.