Sports

Again, Chris Giwa takes over NFF secretariat

PINNICK vs GIWA: Supreme Court orders trial to start afresh in High Court

For the second time in about a month, the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) secretariat in Abuja has experienced an invasion from Ambassador Chris Giwa and his board.

The four-year-old tussle over the leadership of the football house has begun a fresh episode, as Giwa, who had been demanding his right to the chairmanship position, will stop at nothing until the mantle is handed over.

Giwa and his board had on July 2 invaded the Glass House with security personnel, who forced out staff and board members of the Amaju Pinnick administration from the secretariat in Abuja.

The action followed a directive from the Minister of Youth and Sports, Solomon Dalung, who asked the NFF to comply with a court judgement that set aside the purported election that brought Pinnick and his board into the Executive Committee.

on July 23, Giwa was ejected from the secretariat by operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS), who claimed they were acting on instructions from above, as the Pinnick-led board was reinstated – a development that Minister Dalung termed as “security excesses.”

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The DSS operatives have been resuming daily at the secretariat, according to a staff; but they did not show up on Wednesday – a day after the Director General of DSS, Mr. Lawal Musa Daura was sacked by Vice President Professor Yemi Osinbajo.

Chris Giwa and his collaborators may have noticed the absence of the security personnel, and so initiated the invasion to take over while Pinnick and Mohammed Sanusi are away in France for the ongoing FIFA U-20 World Cup.

Meanwhile, in its bid to bring this matter to rest, the NFF Congress last week offered to lift the ban placed on Giwa and four others on the conditions that they withdraw their case against the NFF from the court and sign an affidavit to never take football matters to the ordinary court.

But Giwa reportedly said that the Congress which held in Benin was illegal, which makes it hard to tell when the tussle that began back in 2014, and almost cost Nigeria its membership among footballing nations under FIFA, will end.

FIFA does not recognize the rulings of the ordinary court in football matters, neither does it condone government interference in its affairs, hence Nigeria may still be banned if this confusion in NFF continues.

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Ben Ugbana

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