FIFA Threatens To Suspend Nigeria Over Jos Court Order | Independent Newspapers Limited
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FIFA Threatens To Suspend Nigeria Over Jos Court Order

Posted: Apr 12, 2016 at 3:00 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

Peter Edema, Lagos
World football governing body, FIFA, has warned Nigeria against
implementing the decision of the Federal High Court Jos, saying doing
so will be considered as interference in the internal affairs of the
Nigeria Football Federation (NFF).
A Jos High Court has last Friday nullifying the September 30, 2014
elections of the NFF executive committee led by President Amaju
Pinnick on the premise that the elections were against an earlier
order against holding the elections.
The import of the Court’s order, is to the effect that there is
leadership crisis in the NFF.
Chris Giwa, who is claiming to be validly elected NFF president has
threatened to resume work office on Monday after he announced new
managerial changes at the secretariat at the weekend.
Pinnick said he will appeal the court ruling, while also applying for
a stay of execution on the matter.
But FIFA, in a letter addressed to Amaju Melvin Pinnick, President of
the NFF, and signed by Markus Kattner, its Acting Secretary General,
has warned against implementing the decision of the court because it
contravened articles 13 and 17 of the FIFA Statutes which allows all
member association to manage their affairs independently and with no
influence from third parties.
“In addition and according to article 68 of the FIFA statutes,
recourse to ordinary courts of law is prohibited unless specifically
provided for in the FIFA regulations,” FIFA said.
Continuing, FIFA said, “Furthermore, it is the duty of each member
association to ensure that these provisions are implemented by its
members and possibly take sanctions against those which fail to
respect these obligations.”
It therefore that, “In view of the above, the decision of the Federal
High Court in Jos, if implemented, would likely be considered as an
interference in the internal affairs of the NFF and the case wouyld be
brought to the highest authorities of FIFA for consideration of
sanctions, including the suspension of the NFF.”
FIFA reminded that, “Lastly, we would like to stress that the
plaintiff in question already filed an appeal in relation to the same
matter with the highest judicial sport authorities, the Court of
Arbitration for Sports (CAS), and that said appeal was dismissed by
the CAS on 18 may 2015.”
Meanwhile, Solomon Dalung, Minister of Youth and Sports, has
reiterated the administration respect for the rule of law.
The minister, while reacting to the Jos high Court judgement,
reiterated the government belief in the rule of law and that it also
subscribes to it.
He, therefore, said that for the avoidance of doubt that the Amaju
Pinnick -led NFF has a statutory 30 days of grace to exercise its
right of appeal; therefore the decision of the Court will only take
effect if the time for the right of appeal expired without taking
advantage of appeal.
It will be out of place now for any group of persons who have enjoyed
the benevolence and protection of the law in enforcing their right to
seek to frustrate other party from enjoying same right. In the light
of this, the purported announcement made by the Giwa-led faction, even
after the Amaju Pinnick-led Executives have indicated their intention
to appeal cannot promote growth and stability in our football.
“I am therefore calling on all parties to the dispute to maintain
peace, decorum and respect the rule of law. By this token, they must
allow the judicial process to run its course.”