OYEWOLE, FASHIKUN CALL FOR STATE ELECTIONS BEFORE NFF'S
A former Vice Chairman of the Nigeria Premier League (NPL), Elder Bode Oyewole, has called on the National Sports Commission (NSC), the board of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) and other stakeholders in the football family to ensure that elections are held at the local, state and zonal levels before the national election into the board of the NFF.
''This is the standard practice worldwide, anything short of this is illegal. Most of those so-called delegates who will vote at the elections into the board of NFF are not eligible to vote because their tenures as state FA chairman lapsed months or even years ago, so how can we be talking of credible election with delegates who are not eligible to vote?''.
Oyewole, who is also a former chairman of 3SC Football Club, posits that elections into state associations must be held before elections into the NFF board, ' the Sports Minister, Ibrahim Isa Bio, is doing a good job. But he needs to be told that the fundamental change he desires in football will never happen because most of the delegates that will vote are part of the old order, so we will not have any change in structure, administration or management.' says Oyewole.
On the timing, Oyewole argues that it does not take an eternity to organize elections.
''If we are serious, we can have the elections at local, state and zonal level within two weeks, and after the elections, we will have credible delegates that will elect members of the new NFF board.'
For Olajide Fashikun, a director at Abuja based National Sports Fund, a national election without local, state and zonal elections is fraud, ''We all know why the impeached former president of NFF Sani Lulu Abdullah prolonged the tenure of the state FA Chairmen; so that they could support his re-election bid. We also know that was the reason why he gave them grants and took many of them to championships like the Olympics in Beijing, Angola Nations and the South Africa 2010 FIFA World Cup where they took all the state chairmen, so it is fraud for these guys to continue to stay in office. Allowing them to vote is criminal. I believe we should postpone the election for another two weeks or one month and do the right thing, than to create another faulty structure and waste four years.'' Said Fashikun.