The controversial Chris Giwa-led executive committee of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) have been handed a fresh five-day ultimatum by the world football governing body, Fifa, to quit their respective offices.
In a letter to the NFF, dated Wednesday, September 3, 2014, Fifa confirmed the country’s football federation will be “suspended with immediate effect” by Monday, September 8, 2014, should Chris Giwa cease to withdraw his claims to the post of the NFF president.
A statement on Fifa’s website read: “Following the decision by the FIFA Emergency Committee, FIFA has today, 3 September 2014, sent a letter to the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) confirming that the NFF will be suspended with immediate effect should there still be persons claiming to have been elected to NFF positions on 26 August 2014 and occupying their offices on Monday, 8 September 2014 at 08.00 (Central European Time)”.
Earlier on Wednesday, Giwa, released a statement warning against an elective congress scheduled for Thursday, September 4, in Abuja, by the majority congress; insisting elections have already taken place that saw him become president of the NFF- an action which defied Fifa’s prior correspondence that any persons claiming to have been elected and occupying the NFF offices at midnight on Monday, 1 September, 2014, attracts successive suspensions to the country’s football.
“Given the current circumstances, the FIFA Emergency Committee has decided to set a new deadline of 8 September 2014 at 08.00 CET. Should the new deadline not be respected, the NFF will be automatically suspended until the board claiming to be elected vacates the premises of the NFF and the NFF General Secretary is able to perform his work without interference,” Fifa stressed.
Fifa had in its previous letter said it does not recognise the outcome of the elective congress on August 26, September, 2014, held at the Chida Hotel conference hall in Abuja, in the absence of incumbent NFF president Aminu Maigari, who was being held and quizzed by officials of the Directorate of State Security Service (DSS) on order of controversial former Rivers State police commissioner, Joseph Mbu, now an assistant Inspector general of police.
Giwa, owner of Glo Premier League club Giwa FC, has since Wednesday, 27 September, moved into the NFF office and refused to withdraw his claims to the aforementioned post till date, despite Fifa’s order of imminent suspension.
Fifa, however, wants the NFF, “under the presidency of Aminu Maigari, to hold two extraordinary general assemblies “as soon as possible”; first to elect members of the electoral committee and second to proceed with an elective congress.
“The NFF Executive Committee as it was composed on 25 August 2014, meaning under the presidency of Aminu Maigari, should then convene as soon as possible a first extraordinary general assembly to elect the members of the electoral committee and a second extraordinary general assembly in the shortest time possible allowed by law in order to proceed with the elections of new NFF office-bearers,” Fifa continued.
Meawhile, preparations for an elective congress slated for Thursday, September 4, has been in full gear, with a dedicated online portal launched (for the first time) for interested candidates.
Not less than seven eligible candidates have been cleared to contest- in accordance with the Fifa statutes- for the post of the NFF president.
If the ban comes into force on Monday it means the
African champions would not be able to play their 2015 Afcon qualifier against South Africa on 10 September.