The new week started on a lousy note for Nigerian football as the bottled battle for the heart and soul of the administration of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) was restarted on Monday.
The day started with a press statement from Nigeria’s Sports Minister Solomon Dalung, ordering the incumbent head of the Federation Amaju Pinnick to handover to Christopher Giwa who lays claim to having won an election in August 2014 – the subject of the everlasting imbroglio.
Nigeria’s Supreme Court gave a verdict regarding the case between both parties in early June and Mr Dalung’s statement on Monday morning was to enforce the judgement.
“I have been directed to notify you of the Orders dated June 5th 2018 made by Honorable Justice M. H. Kurya sitting at the Federal High Court Jos in respect of the above mentioned suit between Yahaya Adama Vs Alhaji Aminu Maigari which states that the election of the NFF held on August 26, 2014 under the leadership of Amb Chris Giwa be given recognition pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice filed in this case and that the purported ban of the Executive Committee elected on August 26, 2014 from football activities of the NFF is unconstitutional, null and void,” read the statement from Dalung’s office.
Sequel to the statement, Chris Giwa and his composed executive board members from 2014 went into the NFF Secretariat in Abuja where they purportedly held a meeting. It has been a long wait for the Plateau state-born Giwa – who is reported to have been banned from football activities by the Confederation of African Football (CAF) for five years – to occupy the secretariat.
While football lovers in the country continued to wonder what the latest development would portend for the nation’s football, especially as World’s football governing body FIFA frowns at football taken to industrial courts or the government’s direct interference to the federation, the incumbent party also responded.
Popular lawyer and Solicitor for the Amaju Pinnick and his executive board, Festus Keyamo released a statement of their own later on Monday afternoon warning the Minister and the other faction about an impending FIFA sanction which awaits should they go ahead with the takeover.
More developments are expected to ensue in the coming days, especially with a response from FIFA after an emergency congress/executive meeting might have been convened.