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Feature Opinion Update

Pinnick Doesn’t Deserve Third Term As NFF President

NFF president Amaju Pinnick (PICTURED) has hinted at the possibility of running for a third term in office by contesting the position at the election on September 21.

In an interview with People Sport in Nairobi on Monday, Pinnick, who also doubles as a member of the FIFA Council representing Anglophone countries and a member of the Confederation of African Football Executive Committee, said he had received a lot of requests asking him to seek re-election.

“I had initially decided not to vie, but I have been receiving several calls from very influential Nigerians as well as genuine lovers of the sport urging me to seek another term. “It is within the law and I will decide about it when the right time comes,” he said.

He added: “I’m yet to talk to my family and my business associates though, but there are voices wanting me to continue.”

Pinnick, who took over the leadership of Nigeria football from Aminu Maigari in 2014, is the only person to have served the federation for more than a single term and is in the final days of his second term.

This development will no doubt be trashed by a majority of Nigerian football stakeholders who frown on the maladministration by the current board and desire a leadership change by saddling one of five ex-internationals who have declared interest in contesting the position of NFF president at the polls.

The current board is the most unpopular of the previous ones, led by politicians, and has spent more time in court over a slew of cases involving misappropriation of funds intended for game development.

It has also been widely held responsible for the fallen standard of the game by neglecting grassroots football development, culminating in the free fall of the Super Eagles.

It is also notorious for several misdemeanors such as sneaking in neophyte foreign coaches through the back door and placing them on outrageous monthly salaries; instigating players against one another; influencing the selection of players in th national teams; not paying players’ bonuses and allowances bonuses as due.

The board has also repeatedly displayed a high level of dishonesty and lack of organizational ability, especially where it concerns the Nigeria Professional Football League and the Aiteo NFF Cup, which makes prospective sponsors avoid the former like a plague.

Failure to have both competitions run simultaneously as done in saner climes has taken the shine off the Aiteo Cup, whose winners will, for the first time in history, miss out on the CAF Confederation Cup, a slot that has now been allotted to Kwara United, who finished fourth in the 2021-2022 NPFL standings, in order to beat the registration deadline.

Consequently, all NPFL clubs remaining in the Nigeria’s oldest football competition now feel they have nothing to play for and are threatening to pull out, a development the sponsors will not find palatable.

By Godwin Aikigbe


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