FIFA expresses concern over NFF, says it may suspend Nigeria after Tuesday

By IAfrica
In Nigeria
Jul 5th, 2014
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Maigari-KeshiFIFA on Friday said it had sent a letter to the Nigeria Football Association (NFA) expressing its great concern over different actions taken by the country’s authorities which affect it.

In the letter, the world football governing body said such actions could be in contravention of its regulations, saying its affiliates have to manage their affairs without “third party influence’’.

“FIFA has learnt from various sources that the NFA has been served with court processes and that consequently an order restraining the NFA Chairman, his board members and the NFA Congress from running the affairs of Nigerian football has been granted by a High Court.

“FIFA has also taken note of the detention of NFA Chairman Aminu Maigari, carried out by representatives of the Department of the State Security Service.

“Furthermore, FIFA is also aware that the Minister of Sports has appointed an assistant director to take charge of the NFA.

“It is alleged that the members of the NFA have been convened to attend an Extraordinary Congress on July 5 in Abuja.

“FIFA has reminded the NFA that all FIFA member-associations have to manage their affairs independently and without influence of any third,parties as clearly stipulated in Article 13 paragraph 1 and Article 17 paragraph 1 of the FIFA Statutes,’’ the statement said.

It said FIFA viewed the actions as preventing the NFA from managing its affairs independently and were considered by FIFA as undue interference in NFA affairs.

The statement added that FIFA would not recognise any person or organ not elected in compliance with the NFA statutes (article 17, paragraphs 2 and 3 of the FIFA Statutes).

It said FIFA therefore would not consider the appointment made by the Minister of Sports.

“An elective Congress has been duly convened by the NFA for Aug. 26, 2014 and only decisions and persons elected then will be considered legitimate,’’ FIFA said.

The statement said FIFA had asked the NFA to relay its position to the
relevant authorities.

“The NFA is to inform them that if the aforementioned NFA officials are not fully reinstated by July 8, the case would be referred to the appropriate FIFA bodies for sanctions, including NFA’s potential suspension,’’ it said.

NAN recalls that Justice P.L. Lot of a High Court sitting in Jos, Plateau had on Wednesday granted an Order of Interlocutory Injunction restraining the NFA board from performing its duties.

Maigari, his board members, as well as the NFA Congress, were restrained by the court from running the affairs of Nigerian football pending the determination of the motion on notice.

Lot had asked the Sports Minister, Tammy Danagogo, to appoint the most senior civil servant in the NFA to take charge of affairs pending the determination of the suit.

The minister had consequently asked Lawrence Katken to take charge as acting Secretary-General, with Katken calling an emergency congress billed for Saturday in Abuja.

He had asked the chairmen of Football Associations (FAs) in the FCT and the 36 states to attend the congress.

Meanwhile, Maigari had been arrested by the DSS on Friday immediately he arrived in Abuja from the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil, but he was later released.(NAN)

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