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PRESIDENT JONATHAN’S DECISION OF RESCINDING ON HIS TWO YEAR BAN OF THE SUPER EAGLES FROM INTERNATIONAL FOOTBALL MATCHES IS A PLUS FOR OUR NASCENT DEMOCRACY

By Chief Eze Chukwuemeka Eze

President Jonathan had on 2nd July announced the suspension of the Super Eagles from International Competition for two years following the team's lack lustre performance in the ongoing 2010 FIFA World cup in South Africa. Although it was unanimously agreed that the embarrassing and dismal performance by the National Team in its matches against the Greek and Korean National teams, hitherto underdogs at previous world cup editions in the on-going World Cup in South Africa was unacceptable, majority of Nigerians decried the President's decision following the recommendations of the task force on the WC. It was widely believed that the decision would in the long term be detrimental to the future of football in the country. Consequences would have included the loss of the generational changes envisaged for the Super Eagles in the 2012 Africa Nations Cup with qualifier matches The ban would also have earned us the wrath of football governing bodies FIFA and CAF who in turn would have imposed bans on us thereby depriving our women and youths from playing and participating in any FIFA organized competition.

As a patriotic group interested in the general wellbeing of the country, the Princewill Political Associates joined well-meaning Nigerians to draw the attention of the Government to the cost of following through on the decision. A press release titled “Suspension of further participation in any international competition may not be the best option to improve on the fortunes of Super Eagles instead Princewill Political Associates offer options on how to restrategise the team ahead of future championships” was issued by the PPA following the ban.

The President's decision on the 5th July to allow superior reason to prevail by rescinding the decision was therefore received as a welcome development. It has yet again proven that he has the best interest of the populace at heart and for the best part a leader with a listening ear. This act is in direct contrast to the late General Sani Abacha's refusal to rescind a similar ban on the National Team resulting in their forfeiting the opportunity to defend the Nations Cup it won in 1996 in Tunis in the 1998 South Africa edition. To us, this act is a plus to democracy as it proves that the majority can still sway the powerful minority opinion and that our country has a great future ahead of her through democracy.

We use this opportunity to once again reiterate our earlier stand with regards the immediate disbandment of the existing team and a constitution of a new team from the 2009 silver winning Team coached by Sampson Siasia to be beefed up with the likes of Mikel, Anichiebe, Enyeama, Apam, Adeleye and Emmanuel Ekpo as core members. Whilst acknowledging the stellar roles in time past of most of our aging players that include the legend Kanu Nwankwo, Yakubu Aiyebeni, Jospeh Yobo, Shittu Danny etc we are of the opinion that they need to exit the squad to make way for younger more vibrant players.

That Lars Lagerback be retained with some modifications in his contract that his Swedish assistants should be replaced by Coaches Stephen Keshi and Sampson Siasia to understudy him with hope of taking over from him in the nearest future.

In the event where Lars Lagerback will not be engaged then Stephen Keshi should be contracted to head the coaching crew and be assisted by Sampson Siasia.

We still stand that the targets before either Coach Lars Lagerback if option two is adopted or Stephen Keshi if option 3 is adopted is to qualify the team for the 2012 Nations Cup and lead it to victory and ensure its qualification for the 2014 World Cup and ensuring its advancement to the semi-finals of the event at least.

We still recommend that the FA Technical Team should be overhauled to include the likes of football experts like Keshi, John Fashanu, Mikel Obiku and others while the following should constitute the Monitoring Team that will scout for new players for the Super Eagles - Mumuni Alao, Mike Mayaki, Paul(Sport) Bassey, Uche Okafor, Austin Okocha.

In fulfillment of our earlier pledge to pick up the bills of Coaches Stephen Keshi and Samson Siasia if appointed to handle the new Super Eagles, the Leader of Princewill Political Associates (PPA), Prince Tonye Princewill has set-up a three man Committee headed by Chief Eze Chukwuemeka Eze a notable football Administrator who was the Football Team Manager that led the UNICAL Football Team to win the maiden edition of the NFA/PEPSI COLA for Higher Institutions in 1986 to liaise with the relevant football authorities in the country with hope of offsetting the bills of Coaches Stephen Keshi and Samson Siasia if appointed. According to Princewill, 'I am convinced that the future of Nigeria football lays in the hands of these two unsung tacticians that can stand among the best in the world if given the opportunity. These are the Coaches that will meet up with the new vision of President Jonathan of reviving our dwindling and reversing the misfortunes our football circle particularly in the Super Eagles'. Other members of the Committee are Mr. Emma Horsfall a Player's agent based in Port Harcourt and Miss Naomi Jack a retired female Footballer. Princewill has also asked his Bankers for a consolidated Fund to make this new move that will revolutionize football and make our common dream a reality.

Chief Eze Chukwuemeka Eze,
Media Consultant to
Prince Tonye Princewill
06-07-10

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