Monday, November 28, 2022

NFF Presidency: Ikpeba, others endorse Musa Amadu

“I think we need change, and we cannot shy away from that fact,” said ex-Super Eagles star Victor Ikpeba.

• August 24, 2022
Victor Ikpeba, Musa Amadu and Nigeria Football Federation (NFF)
Victor Ikpeba, Musa Amadu and Nigeria Football Federation (NFF)

Ex-international Victor Ikpeba and former Gombe FA chairman, Shuaibu Gara-Gombe, are among several stakeholders who have endorsed Musa Amadu as the next Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) president.

Amaju Pinnick is the incumbent NFF president. First elected in 2014, Mr Pinnick was reelected in 2018.

They gave their endorsements on Tuesday in Abuja during Mr Amadu’s official declaration to vie for the NFF presidency in the forthcoming elective congress.

The NFF had on Thursday at its 77th General Assembly in Lagos fixed September 30 for its elective congress in Benin City.

Mr Gara-Gombe said he endorsed Mr Amadu because of his integrity. He recalled that it was one of the main reasons for his resignation as the federation’s general secretary in 2015.

“We were at the 2014 FIFA World Cup, and the then minister of sports rushed back to Nigeria to meet former President Goodluck Jonathan and obtained some money to the tune of $2.6 million as a loan to bail the Super Eagles out,” said Mr Gara-Gombe. “The cash was taken in diplomatic bags to the World Cup with the understanding that when the competition’s prize money from FIFA is paid to the NFF, the money borrowed would be refunded to the federal government.”

“Unfortunately,” he added, “the money came back, and the leadership of the NFF directed Amadu via a text message to pay the money into a private account. However, Amadu refused to carry out the instruction, and that was how he resigned from his job.”

Mr Gara-Gombe added, “The leadership had wanted to charge him for insubordination, and his response was that he had no issues with transferring the money but that the instruction must be in writing and not via text message. He argued that it had never been part of the football association’s financial control system to give instructions to transfer such huge money via a text message.”

Also speaking, Mr Ikpeba said, “I have known Amadu for almost 25 years now and can attest to the fact that he is indeed a man of integrity. I am not talking about the politics of the elections in a month’s time, but I have come here to listen and see things for myself.”

The ex-Eagles player further said, “We’ve come a long way, and I think my presence here today speaks volumes and signifies an intent of purpose and change. I think we need change, and we cannot shy away from that fact. NFF’s technical committee chairman (Ahmed Yusuf) as well as the League Management Committee (LMC) chairman (Shehu Dikko) are all here, and they are all my friends.”

He added, “Most of the state football association chairmen are also here, and that says a lot. I think all that is left now is for you all to search your conscience and do what is right for Nigerian football.” 

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