The FIFA Emergency Committee on Wednesday, July 9 2014 suspended Nigeria from all international football activities with immediate effect, on account of government interference
on the NFF affairs.
Three reasons were given for the decision to remove the executive committee of the NFF.
The first was “the unfortunate incident of the international embarrassment caused the Nigerian nation at the 2014 FIFA World Cup, by failure of the Aminu Maigari-led NFF to fully and firmly resolve issues of finance with the Super Eagles ahead of the championship.”
The second was for “shortchanging grassroots development by failure to regularly avail State Football Associations of annual grants”.
And the third reason was “abuse of NFF Statutes in its constitution of NFF Electoral Committee, by altering the list of persons approved by the Congress at the 2013 General Assembly in Warri, Delta State, and inaugurating a different Committee”.
Past FIFA Ban On Nigeria
1989 – 2 YEARS
In 1989, FIFA placed a two year ban on Nigeria from participating in FIFA age-grade tournaments and also withdrew the country’s right to host the 1991 World Youth Championship.
The infraction for which Nigeria was banned was the alleged falsification of the ages of three players, Andrew Uwe, Samson Siasia and Dahiru Sadi.
The trio had featured for Nigeria in the U-20 World Cups of Mexico ’83 and Moscow ’85 and had altered their ages to participate in the Seoul ’88 Olympics.
The Experts’ Opinion On Latest Ban
ADEGBOYE ONIGBINDE :
“It was not unexpected, I have been sounding this warning for a long time.”
“You don’t expect a government to invest huge sums of money in the running of football in Nigeria and still be handicapped in making some contributions to football in the country.”
“If FIFA doesn’t consider Nigerian government sponsorship of football and the huge sums of VOX, money in day to day running of the game, as well as sponsorship of national teams in world tournaments as government interference, but intervening as a result of court order to ensure peace and order as interference, then my advice is that the government of Nigeria should hands off entirely the finance and sponsorship of the game in the country.
“If FIFA says we should bring them back, let’s bring them back and let them go and look for the money to run their affairs because giving them money will also amount to interference.”
“Let the administrators removed by the NFF Congress be reinstated and start sponsoring football all alone without the support of the Federal Government of Nigeria and see how effective and efficient it would be.”
ADOKIYE AMIESIMAKA :
“FIFA is probably not well-informed. Wasn’t it reported that the Congress of the body dissolved it in accordance with FIFA-approved statutes.
“Regarding earlier reported court order, FIFA can’t query due obedience and compliance. After all, FIFA itself is subject to jurisdiction of Court of Arbitration for Sports (CAS) which in itself is subject to jurisdiction of Swiss judicial system.
“Even on sport-related matters especially on public policy, fair hearing, and Jurisdiction,”
“Order of court can’t therefore be said to be government interference on account of supremacy of the constitution, separation of powers, and rule of law.
“Government can and should demand accountability for disbursed public funds. On no account should Nigeria succumb to blackmail from any source.
“If FIFA disregards lawful action and insists on suspension, so be it.This could be a blessing in disguise and a change in the fortunes of Nigeria football.”
TUNDE DISU :
“FIFA Suspension on Nigeria on wednesday will be lifted soon.”
“The governing body cannot afford to leave Nigeria out of their competition because of the past contribution of the nation towards the development of the round leather game.
“The suspension would be a step towards the development of Nigeria football if it is lifted.”
GARBA LAWAL :
“I don’t know where the problem is coming from, I’m part of the technical committee for sure but I don’t know what is really going on.
“So I can’t talk about the issue, it’s so complicated.”
JOHN FASHANU :
“What FIFA used in suspending Nigeria was correspondence from the dissolved board of the NFF, who in my opinion, lied about what truly went down regarding the court order and the congress.”
“The court dissolved the board on account of a stakeholder’s injunction, so why not slam the person who took a football issue to a civil court as contained in their rules?
“But I guess the past board of the NFF misled FIFA by running to them with claims that Government influenced their sacking which isn’t true.’’
“The wise thing they should have done was to submit all documents from the extra ordinary congress to FIFA as soon as it was over and even before convening it, they should have informed FIFA, in that way FIFA will not slam a ban after hearing from a drowning board”