NFF Presidency: Coup Against Emeruwa, Uchegbulam As Vice Presidency Is Zoned to South East

By Daily Sports Nigeria on September 19, 2022

Intrigues that have been the under currents of Nigerian politics no matter the level has reared its ugly head in the forthcoming Nigeria Football Federation election tentatively billed for September 30, in Benin City, Edo State.

You can agree with this columnist without any prejudice that the North through some sell outs from the Southern part have carried out coup against the South East to ensure that NFF supremo position comes from the North.

The Zone has paid her dues in any angle you may be looking at it from. The Zone adequately contributes meaningfully in raising quality players for the national teams male and women. However, when it comes to the Zone leading from the front one tribal and trivial politics would be employed to knock off the South East Zone from the race despite the obvious fact that their candidates ranks first rate.  In short, they are round pegs in round holes. They knew their onions’ all. It is no boast. The records are there. 

These Northern elements are always so desperate when it comes to grabbing power at the national level. I will solely lay the blame again on the Southern Zone especially South East candidates vying for first Vice President position that allowed the North through Amaju Pinnick to easily penetrate their ranks to alter the equation or chances of solid and qualified candidates who are fully armed with implementable programmes which would move Nigerian football forward practically.  This division is aimed by the North to deeply destroy football affirmation and governance in the country by this singular dastard action of NFF Electoral Committee.

The present scenario is typical of the Northern region or zone when it comes to power equation in Nigeria; now they want to implement it in everything. Sadly, they have extended such nasty mentality to football governance. This is typical act of robbing Peter to pay Paul and successfully they have clinically executed their plans through our long-throat crumbs seeking/picking betrayals from the Southern region, exactly what is happening in the larger Nigerian polity.

This intrigue is finally home to roost. It was floated way back by the arrogant group that tagged itself Northern Caucus in the federation. Amaju Pinnick knew way back who would succeed him and from what part of the country.

South East zone is the worst hit. The candidates from that zone stood shoulder high as some of the most qualified amongst the lot. The Zone can vividly boast or parades astute men with immense acumen to steer our comatose football administration, sundry, healthy and enduringly again.

But look at what Amaju Pinnick and his stooges my supposedly fellows laborers for good of the Zone, Felix Anyansi Agwu long years of Chairing the Management board who ought to be preparing his handover note to younger individual as Enyimba International FC chairman aft Obinna Ogba etc, a Senator and football administrator who incidentally provided themselves as willing devils to Amaju Pinnick’s antics with his Northern oligarchy bent on depriving the Zone (South) of taking shot at the NFF top job which requires “the wise men from the east” to rejuvenate head on.

 Head or tail, the Zone has yet again been short-changed. I don’t know the bull shit.

Agwu, Ogba etc must have been told to warrant them succumbing to this blackmail of first Vice President of the reverend apex football body.

Let us face it squarely, both Agwu and Ogba angling for the second fiddle position are they not eminently qualified enough to lead NFF?. For instance Agwu has nothing to prove again to clinch the top job. His records in Enyimba since he mounted the saddle as her chairman speak volumes of successes.  Any man from the South East Zone ought never to think of playing a second fiddle in the forthcoming regime in NFF.
Such would be too offensive to the ears. After all the man who is said to be so favoured by the powers that be are less qualified in all ramifications and cannot be compared with their South East counterparts’ vying for same NFF Presidency. This conspiracy against South East must stop forthwith. Go to political arena in the country the South Eastern people are at the receiving end.

They are not jobless like many others in this same race. They don’t depend on government patronages. Their means of livelihood are hard earned. They are focused, clam and don’t carry airs around themselves.  They are frankly determined to truly fix the nation’s football for the benefit of all and sundry. But see the sabotage against their genuine and legitimate aspirations. The hallmark of a typical man from the South East to uphold and turn things around for best result not to pocket and loot the treasury  would remain uppermost. Honestly, only in Nigeria will all these absurdity against very productive Zone take root.

Let us not forget that there is already a Court case against the said elective congress of the NFF in September 30. Without much ado, the cabal in power equation in our football has come up with what it decided and approved as what and how the current NFF board would look like or be.

This has been the bane of elections into the body over these years and each election year beautiful ideas and best practices brought forward to constitute broad based and open who and who would or are qualified to vote in NFF election has been sitting upon by these oftentimes faceless cabals who only has its activities built around any incumbent NFF President.

The forthcoming is no exception. It would be recalled that it started with that outburst from one so called Northern Caucus in the Federation that vowed that the next NFF president must come from the North insisted that Amaju Pinnick has served out the turn of Southern Nigeria, what that exactly means, I don’t fathom. Is it in their constitution, has been agreed before now or it is just starting with this present election?

That is the way we are. Least we quickly forget, the rubber stamped NFF Electoral body the other day came out with the expected where it outrageously zoneed first Vice President to the South East. Such first salvo never came as surprise to analysts, pundits, bookmakers and other keen watchers of how NFF election has been over these years. NFF election has never brought in anything new or valuable to the table, be it improved game or administration all these long. It has been the status quo and manipulation to enthrone a non performer to man a supposedly sensitive position like NFF Presidency.

This time when some of the brightest and informed that knew inside out how the game is being governed presently around the globe came to the race, these clogs on the wheel of progress of the game in Nigeria have devised another means to stop them. What a country that acts like demented hen that sucks its finest eggs. It will amount to foolhardiness to fold our hands and watch these groups who have destroyed the entire Nigeria to extend such naughtiness to football, a game that has healed Nigeria’s serious open wounds in the past and still counting or healing.

It is absolutely clear now that the people who sponsored that dubious Northern Caucus in the federation sheer arrogance display two weeks ago. These elements that cried wolf the other time knew who sent them and between that period the Northern Caucus in the federation cried loudest and the other day when all South East candidates in the race were automatically told in clearer terms that they won’t contest the number one position signaled sad commentary and conspiracy against the region that parades the best of the lot in this year’s race to Sunday Dankaro House.

My heart goes for the game since the unacceptable announcement by the Electoral body to zone a mere first Vice President to the South East, a Zone that holds the aces for front line role to refresh and restart Nigerian football henceforth if elected to call the shots never the second fiddle they want the Zone to play. “The cat was finally let out of the bag”.

The lies against the South East by this Buhari government has its days numbered.  The killings ongoing in North East and recently in his North West Zone are nothing compared to what is happening in the South East Zone. What is happening in his State Katsina leaves soured taste in the mouth.

The current Television advertisement by Lai Mohammed’s  Information Ministry where Defence Minister  picture on where they called South East names leaving the trending kidnap of 50 people in  Katsina, Buhari’s home State. The kidnappers as at the time of putting this page to bed are demanding Two hundred and fifty million Naira if the 50 persons in their net must be released. Lai Mohammed, a highly discredited politician who has no relevance in his ward, local government and the entire Kwara State where the incumbent governor has ran him out only having Abuja as his home.
All this naked blackmail against the South East would be a thing of the past as Buhari goes back to Daura Katsina State come May next year. 

It is instructive to point out here that Mahammadu Buhari, Lai Mohammed, Minister of Defence, Governor Rufai in short, all those retired and serving Generals and their cohorts who never wish South East well collectively brought in Hope Uzodinma as Governor of Imo State which was deliberate and to bring in unprecedented insecurity into Imo State and other South Eastern States ever since.

The enemies of Ndigbo have been frivolously attributing the massive killings in the Zone to IPOB and ESN; all are lies against these outfits. It has been clear case of calling dog bad name in order to hang it. You can further say it is that of pot calling kettle black.
That is what South East region has been undergoing since Buhari and APC came to power since 2015, definitely, this nonsense won’t continue after this obvious Igbo hater of the first and worst order. I digress.

We want to rerun the news item we carried last on the silly and premeditated statement by the heavily ganged NFF Electoral Committee for the benefit of dear readers who missed the news item or story last week. Note that Daily Sports ran the story too on its portal.

Nigeria Football Federation’s (NFF) First Vice President, Seyi Akinwumi, Confederation of African Football’s (CAF) Christian Emeruwa and Imo State FA Chairman, Amanze Uchegbulam, among other southern candidates in the September 30 NFF presidential election will find out soon that their aspiration to succeed incumbent president, Amaju Melvin Pinnick, maybe an unrewarding venture, after all. This is glaring from recent developments, including the list of cleared candidates for various elective positions by the Electoral Committee.

The Electoral Committee on Monday, September 12, released the list of cleared candidates to contest in the elections billed to hold in Benin. From the list of presidential candidates, 10 were given the nod to begin campaigns and among these 10, six are northerners and four southerners.

The four Southerners are Akinwunmi – South-West; CAF’s Head of Safety and Security, Emeruwa and Uchegbulam, (both from South-East), as well as former Nigeria international goalkeeper, Peterside Idah who is from the South-South. Stakeholders say these candidates have all been schemed out of the presidential race.

This is because the position of the first Vice President has been ‘zoned’ to the South East, with only three candidates from the area cleared to contest for the position. The three candidates include two current members of the NFF board, Felix Anyansi-Agwu (Abia State) and Senator Obinna Ogba (Ebonyi State), as well as Chinedu Okoye from Anambra State.

Stakeholders have argued that with the first vice president’s slot ‘zoned’ to South-East, it would be difficult for any of the four southerners to become the next NFF president.

Further Analysing emerging positions ahead of the polls, Osasu Obayiuwaana, a BBC sports reporter, said, “From what I see, from the list of candidates for the presidency, the first vice-presidency and other executive committee positions in the NFF, it is clear that political deals have been done underground, by Nigerian football’s principalities and powers.  “They have clearly zoned the first vice presidency of NFF to the South Eastern Zone, to ensure that no Southern candidate in the race can become President. In Nigeria’s geopolitics, the president and first vice president cannot both come from either South or the North.

“This means the presidential candidates from the South, like Emeruwa, Uchegbulam and Akinwunmi have a very steep, if not impossible, hill to climb.”
His view corroborates that of former Super Eagles captain and striker, Segun Odegbami, who had earlier stated that it would be “so difficult for a Southerner to replace” Amaju Pinnick as NFF’s new president. He based his calculations on the fact of regional politics that has permeated Nigeria’s political space. “I am not versed in politics and when you want to go for any position, whatever position you have to campaign, meet people, in this environment, you have to bribe, cheat and manipulate certificates, you have to do all kinds of things to win elections in this part and football is not immune from it,” Odegbami said.

“It also matters where you come from. Are you Yoruba or Igbo; from the North or South? It is like the elections we are going to have in September; the big factor will be where the different candidates are going to come from.”
“We have had a Delta man, who is outgoing. I can bet it will be difficult for any Southerner to be the next NFF president because the big question will be whether they have had their turn, this is our own turn.”

These postulations are not cast in stone because as incumbent NFF president, Pinnick, is from the south, his current first Vice President, Seyi Akinwunmi, is also from the South. So, the election could be decided by other factors, including the ability of the candidates to trade positions and sell their candidacy to the electorate.

Finally, you can vividly deduce the calculations and your guess is as good as mine. But this columnist finds it absolutely inappropriate or convenient to believe in this 21st century this kind of barbaric acts can still be melted out to stakeholder in a supposedly so called one Nigeria would be told the position it has to contest for in a football federation election. Haba!

That the forthcoming NFF election would exclude some of the brightest brains/ candidates from one particular Zone who stood qualified to vie for Presidency in just a twinkle of an eye to suit the powers that be could be safely likened to madness. If there is anyhow this anomaly and cheat would be reversed let it come quickly.

My question has been, must these people from the Northern be always at the helm? For instance Buhari fixed them everywhere in Nigeria yet the entire country is ruined presently. They want to be at the head but don’t have the capacity to drive it enduringly.

As it is now, Harrison Jalla, Austin Popo and others are already in the Court for different reason(s). Nothing stops another Court case questioning the rationale behind this exclusion of Ndigbo from the South East Zone from contesting for the number one position in the NFF instead of the second seat reserved for them.

Enough should enough this time. This action or inaction must be called to question this time. We are keenly following the intrigues of goings front and back from Amaju and his fellow power manipulators from the North. As I have earlier maintained, it is an ill wind that would blow nobody any good.

The truth remains that the counter productivity would be so enormous for the country’s football to contend with in the nearest future.  A stitch in time they say, saves nine. Keep shooting hard till next week, meanwhile we wait!!




Source Daily Sports Nigeria

Posted September 19, 2022


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