By Richard Jideaka, Abuja:
Nigeria's sports minister, Solomon Dalung, has blamed the crisis in Nigerian football on corrupt journalists whom he said collect bribes from the leadership of the Nigeria Football Federation.
The minister also watched while his aides physically shoved journalists who demanded an apology from the minister for his comment at the NFF extra ordinary congress held at Chida Hotel in Abuja on Wednesday.
Dalung refused to withdraw his words and left after addressing the NFF assembly.
The Sports Minister who only showed up around 12.30pm in an event that was scheduled for 10am as usual took a swipe on all stakeholders in the Nigerian football and sports sector before he particularly heaped abuses on journalists as being responsible for the crisis.
“I’m like a guerilla person, I’m not afraid of anyone that a woman gave birth to," Dalung said belligerently. " The more they talk about me, the more I get stronger. Some of you here including the media shamelessly sent text messages and write nonsense. I want to assure you that I’m a Guerilla Man. I have never lived in comfort zone, so I’m a stranger to the comfort zone. I cannot never be threatened.
"I have survived more than five assassination attempts in my life. I’m a human rights activist. You don’t gather and begin to drag some people down for selfish reasons. The football family must go back and put itself to order, it is not for me, I don’t elect President or put Presidents.”
A guerilla person is a member of an irregular armed force that fights a stronger force by sabotage and harassment.
Earlier before the NFF general assembly was declared open, both NFF President Pinnick and Chairman Senate Committee on Sports, Senator Obinna Ogba, called for calm and assured of renewed vigour in moving Nigerian football forward.