FIFA hammer dangles on Nigeria

FIFA hammer dangles on Nigeria

Sunday, October 26, 2014 8:05 pm

The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) has warned that the country could be suspended by FIFA on Oct. 27, if all pending football matters were not withdrawn from the nation’s civil courts.

A statement by Ademola Olajire, the NFF’s Head of Communication, noted that the latest threat was as a result of an order by a Jos Federal High Court, nullifying the election into the executive committee of the association.

Amaju Pinnick, NFF chair, files stay of execution

Amaju Pinnick, NFF chair, files stay of execution

According the statement, this is coming even as the Super Eagles still have a chance of qualifying for the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations to defend their crown, in spite of the poor start to their qualification campaign for the January continental showpiece.

Other national teams expected to be affected by the ban are the Golden Eaglets, the reigning champions and the Super Falcons that had just qualified for the World Cup.

The statement said that CAF President Issah Hayatou had told Sports Minister, Tammy Danagogo in Windhoek, Namibia that FIFA and CAF were fed up with “Nigeria’s incorrigibility in the area of football administration.

“I had to plead passionately with FIFA President, Sepp Blatter, not to take action on Nigeria on Friday, because Nigeria was in the final of the African Women Championship, as a ban on your country could have been bad for the competition and our sponsors.

“We all heard the news of the court ruling on Thursday, and the football world is angry with Nigeria. That is the truth,’’ the statement quoted Hayatou as saying.

“The FIFA letter that came to your federation before the elections of September 30 was very clear about an automatic suspension, should there be any interference with the political process, and after the elections went ahead, we all thought you had settled your issues.”

The statement quotes Hayatou as saying that “Nigeria signed to be part of the football world by joining FIFA, and opted to abide by the FIFA-approved Statutes that you have.

“How many times do we have to tell your country that football matters are not taken to civil courts? If Nigeria no longer wants to be part of the football world, then so be it,” an angry Hayatou had said.

Hayatou was said to have held a meeting with Sports Minister, Danagogo and the Nigerian High Commissioner to Namibia, Biodun Olorunfemi.

It said the meeting was also attended by Deputy President of the CAF Appeal Board, Nigeria’s Amanze Uchegbulam, CAF General Coordinator, Paul Bassey (Nigeria) and Media Committee Member, Aisha Falode

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