LAWYERS THREATEN SPORTS MINISTER, EKEJI, OTHERS WITH COURT CONTEMPT
FOR allegedly disobeying court orders on issues concerning the sponsorship of the Nigeria Premier League (NPL) deal, a group of lawyers standing for the National Association of Nigerian Footballers (NANF) have threatened the Sports Minister and Chairman, National Sports Commission (NSC), Taoheed Adedoja, and some top officials of the commission, the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) as well as NPL with contempt suit.
NANF was in court last year challenging the interference of both the NSC and NFF in the affairs of the NPL. In a letter signed by Bello Aideloje, ESQ, and made available to The Guardian yesterday, the lawyers said the sports minister had taken several steps directly or otherwise to make nonsense of the court.
The letter read: 'We are constrained to make this complaint particularly as it concerns your good self, the Nigeria Premier League (NPL) and others as it relates to the manner you have strained yourself to disobey very clear orders of court urging parties to maintain status quo ante bellum, which you are well aware of.
'While we may grant a loss of the matter, where such becomes consistent, we conclude that such instances of disobedience are neither inadvertent nor mistaken. You gave specific directives to the NPL to give effect to the acts of interference of the present management by an illegal band of self-styled FIFA citizens.
'Also, you have by ministerial interventions sponsored internal disharmony by twisting the loyalty of the Acting Secretary General of the NPL against the dully constituted head of the NPL, Mr. Davidson Owumi. These acts of disobedience are deliberate, calculated and directly aimed at ridiculing the courts that are duly served of the issues before them.'
The lawyers spoke further: 'Events are pointing in a possible renewed offensive against ourselves and our clients by you and persons purporting to act on your behalf to force us to convince the club owners not to humiliate you by rejecting Globacom's Greek offer to pay less sum in satisfaction of a judgment debt to NPL.
'Clearly, it can be asserted, most forcefully, that you have, by your various actions herein recruited a large army of contemnors, whom you have coerced to join you in the sure route. There is no limit to the number of people that can be held accountable for contemptuous behaviour.
'We are by this letter giving you notice that surely, steps have been finalised to bring all those who have been disobeying orders of court to account. Please note that contempt proceedings are individual in nature and we shall press it against your good self and others even out of office.'