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PFAN vows to scuttle NFF congress over exclusion

The Professional Footballers Association of Nigeria (PFAN), has vowed to abort the proposed Annual General Assembly of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), over its exclusion…

The Professional Footballers Association of Nigeria (PFAN), has vowed to abort the proposed Annual General Assembly of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), over its exclusion from the meeting.

After so much pressure from the government and Nigerian football stakeholders, the Amaju Pinnick led NFF has fixed August 16 as the date for its annual congress in Yenagoa, Bayelsa state.

The tenure of the present board of the NFF which began on September 21, 2018 will expire on September 20, so top on the agenda of the proposed congress is the 2022 NFF election.

However, instead of inviting PFAN, the body recognised by world football governing body FIFA and the NFF congress, the NFF has decided to invite a rival footballers’ union to the congress.

It would be recalled that the rival body known as All Nigerian Players Football Union was inaugurated in November 2021 in Abuja under the leadership of Chikelue  Iloenyosi, a loyalist of Amaju Pinnick.

When the new body was inaugurated, tongues wagged as most football stakeholders saw it as a move to emasculate PFAN which has been a strong opposition to the present NFF leadership.

Speaking exclusively to Daily Trust, the president of PFAN, Tijani Babangida, said the proposed NFF congress will be an effort in futility, if his association is excluded from the Yenagoa assembly.

He said if the anomaly is not corrected immediately, PFAN will be left with no option than to go back to court to get another injunction to stop the congress.

Babangida said it is unfortunate that after his association vacated the court injunction for the congress to take place, the NFF is now trying to create confusion.

“It is rather sad that some people don’t want the congress to hold. There is no way we will allow the congress to go on, if PFAN is excluded. We vacated the court order for the congress to be held because we are major stakeholders in Nigerian football.

“Our association is the one recognised by FIFA and the NFF congress. If they think they can push us aside, they will be making a serious mistake. We are going to fight for our rights. We are ready to go back to court to stop the congress,” said Babangida.

The member of the 1996 Atlanta Olympics gold winning team also called on Pinnick to show more sincerity in his dealings with Nigerian football stakeholders by keeping to his words.

Meanwhile, a football stakeholder who spoke on condition of anonymity said if PFAN carries out its threat, it will be in the best interest of some desperate NFF board members.

“These people know what they are doing. They want to intentionally provoke PFAN members to go back to court so that they can have another excuse. They don’t want the congress to hold,” he said.

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