EXCLUSIVE: Players Beg President Buhari To Intervene In Looming Nigeria Football Crisis
Top Nigeria Footballers under the umbrella of PFAN Project 2022 have formally requested President Muhammadu Buhari (PICTURED ABOVE) to specially and urgently intervene in what they describe as a “looming crisis” in football in the country.
The players demanded that the NFF Statutes 2010 be revisited by major stakeholders so as to overturn the dominance of State Football Association Chairmen, which has led to the retrogression of Nigeria Football.
They complained that present-day players have been shortchanged by the NFF, while past stars have been blocked from serving in the sector they gave their youth.
The players also decried the downward slide of the fortunes of the national sport under the leadership of Amaju Pinnick.
www.insideglasshouse.com has specially obtained the letter to Mr President, whose receipt was acknowledged on September 15, 2021 .
We publish below the complete correspondence:
Commander in Chief
Of the Armed Forces of
The Federal Republic of Nigeria.
The Senior Special Assistant on Sports
To the President of Nigeria.
Your Excellency Sir,
LOOMING CRISIS IN NIGERIA FOOTBALL SPACE: APPEAL FOR URGENT INTERVENTION
We bring you compliments from the Professional Footballers Association of Nigeria (PFAN) Project 2022 Task Force Committee led by its Chairman, Prince Harrison Jalla, express our Profound gratitude to His Excellency Mohammadu Buhari GCFR , President of the FRN for your unconfined support for the overall Development of Sports and especially Football in Nigeria.
For over 70 years Nigeria football has been held in the jugular by an entrenched retrogressive system that uses shortcuts to achieve cosmetic victories at youth football level internationally but in real terms has grossly retarded sustainable football development especially in contemporary times as we are in now.
This entrenched retrogressive system has effectively shut out the main stakeholders of football including government from effectively contributing or sanitising the workings of football development in Nigeria.
The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) as presently constituted and regulated by NFF Statutes 2010 even though not known by the laws of Nigeria is skewed, and extremely flawed in its operating system.
What is known to the Nigeria laws as a sovereign nation is the Nigeria Football Association (NFA) Act 2004.
Presently there are five members of the NFF as recognized by the NFF Statutes 2010 which are
1. The State Football Associations including the FCT
2. The Players Association :-Professional Footballers Association of Nigeria (PFAN)
3. The Coaches Association:- Nigeria Football Coaches Association (NFCA)
4. The Referees Association:- Nigeria Referees Association (NRA)
5. The Football Leagues.
The State Football Associations including the FCT have 37 Delegate Votes, while the other 4 members have a combined 4 Delegates Votes.
This anomaly has thus made the State Football Associations to perpetually have power of Congress to do whatever they like as decisions are rubber stamped.
The players Association presently led by comrade Tijjani Babangida (MON) have tried to dialogue with the hierarchy of the NFF without success over serious fundamental issues to bring progress to our stagnated football development decided to set up a PFAN PROJECT 2022 TASK FORCE, which we are relying heavily on the NFF Statutes 2010 and The Constitution of Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 as amended, which inter alia states :
1. Article 1.1 of NFF Statutes : That the Nigeria Football Federation is a private organisation of an associative nature in compliance with the laws of Nigeria. It is formed for unlimited period.
2. 1999 Constitution of Nigeria: Section 14(3) The composition of the government of the Federation or any of its agencies and the conduct of its affairs shall be carried out in such a manner as to reflect the federal character of Nigeria and the need to promote national unity, and also to command national loyalty, thereby ensuring that there shall be no predominance of persons from few states or from a few ethnic or sectional groups in that government or in any of its agencies, and relevant provisions to explore every available legal means to correct the basic anomalies enshrined in the NFF Statutes 2010 which primarily are:
1. The composition of the voting delegates of the NFF Congress
2. The composition of the NFF Executive Board.
The 11-man PFAN Task Force Project 2022 was inaugurated in Warri, Delta State, on the 26th of June 2021 and wrote immediately to the NFF same day requesting for Amendments to relevant articles bordering on items 1 and 2 above, while giving the Mandatory 90-day notice according to article 27(2& 3) of the NFF Statutes 2010 and copied the relevant authorities in FIFA, CAF and office of Nigeria’s Hon. Minister of Youths and Sports. (See attached).
The NFF as presently led by Mr. Amaju Melvin Pinnick in its characteristics modus operandi ignored our request and hurriedly called for an Extraordinary General Assembly (EGA) in Benin City on the 8th of August 2021 to continue to wallow in their illegal act with a sole agenda of Statutes Amendments.
The Players Association queried the call for an EGA for not adhering to the NFF Statutes in Article 29(1, 2, 3, 4 & 5) for the mandatory 30-day notice to properly articulate our points and for not stating the member(s) who requested for an amendment and which sections of the statutes to be amended.
Hence the Players Association in adherence to the NFF Statutes boycotted the Extraordinary General Assembly and officially wrote to the NFF and relevant bodies including the office of the Hon. Minister of sports, stating the rationale behind the boycott.( See attached dated ….).
The NFF in their characteristic way of not listening to good reasoning decided to perpetrate more illegalities in setting up a Statutes Amendment Committee.
The Players Association wrote directly this time to the Hon. Minister of Sports office which is the highest supervisory organ of sports in Nigeria including the NFF intimating him of the looming crisis that is
avoidable. (See attached dated ……)
The PFAN Project 2022 Task Force has the mandate of its National Administrative Council and all Nigerian footballers past and present to extricate them from the shackle of untold hardship and depravation caused by the usurpers of their rights in maintaining the lopsided status quo of the NFF Statutes 2010.
We therefore, most humbly appeal to your Excellency, Sir, as a sports-loving President to help stop the spiraling downward slide our football has taken especially since the present board of the NFF came into power.
Current Footballers are terribly shortchanged, while the past or ex-footballers are dying in penury blocked from being active participants in a sector they toiled and sacrificed for.
May the labours of our heroes past not be in vain.
Comrade Edema Fuludu
For PFAN PROJECT 2022 TASK FORCE