11 December 2018

Nigeria: 'NFF Has Been Hijacked By Cabal'

Fresh facts have emerged on why former Ogun State Sports Commissioner, Bukola Olopade, resigned his position as Chief Executive Officer of the Bet9ja-sponsored Nigeria National League (NNL).

Olopade resigned a few days ago citing undue interference by the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) in the running of the NNL, particularly its recent decision to go ahead with the Super 8 play-off.

After the NFF board meeting in Asaba, the Nigeria Football Federation was said to have mandated NNL chairman, Chidi Ofor Okenwa, to immediately convene a congress of stakeholders to take a decision which would be ratified by the executive committee in a bid to find a lasting solution to the problems associated with NPFL's abrupt end to the season in week 24.

The NNL then came up with a decision not to go for Super 8 play-off, sighting force majeure, since the Confederation of African Football (CAF) and the NFF had already released its calendar for the 2018/2019 football season.

A source close to Olapade told The Guardian yesterday he took the decision to quit the NNL job because of his belief that a strong cabal had hijacked the day-to-day operations of the NFF from its president Amaju Pinnick.

"I sat with Olopade for more than three hours today (yesterday), and his argument was that a powerful cabal is controlling the NFF president on decision making. He told me that Amaju gave the go ahead to the NNL to implement its decision in promoting eight teams, instead of the Super 8. How come he danced to the tune of these cabals by making a u-turn is a big surprise to him," the source stated.

The Guardian learnt that the second vice chairman of the NFF, Shehu Dikko was one of those who objected the NNL decision to promote eight teams at the Asaba congress.

Another source hinted yesterday that one of the clubs already listed for promotion, Kada United, had threatened not to participate in the NFF super 8 play off, just as the NNL chairman, Chidi Ofor Okenwa, was said to have written to the NFF threatening to resign if their decision is not respected.

Olopade could not be reached for comment yesterday.

Nigeria

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