FIFA Threatens Sanction Against Nigeria Over Pinnick’s Sack
The World Soccer Ruling Body, Fifa, has again written to the Nigeria Football Federation, NFF, on the renewed leadership crisis, noting that implementing the Jos Court ruling would amount to interference in the internal affairs of the NFF.
Last Friday, the Federal High Court sitting in Jos, had ruled in favour of the 2014 ruling by Justice Ambrose Allagoa, annulling the Warri Elective Congress that produced the Amaju Pinnick-led Board of the NFF.
Reacting, Fifa in a letter emailed to President Amaju Pinnick, dated April 11, 2016, and made available to Prompt News Online, noted that Chris Giwa’s appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sports, CAS, had since been dismissed.
The letter signed by the Acting Secretary General of Fifa, Markus Kattner, warned that appropriate Fifa authorities might invoke relevant sanctions which may include suspension of NFF from Fifa activities should the Nigerian Government go ahead to implement the Jos Court ruling.
We reproduce the Fifa letter below:
Mr Amaju Melvin Pinnick
Nigeria Football Federation (NFF)
Zurich, 11 April 2016
Verdict of the Jos Federal High Court
We acknowledge receipt of your correspondence dated 8 April 2016 with regard to the ruling of the Federal High Court in Jos which apparently nullified the elections of 30 September 2014 of the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF).
In this respect, and first of all, we would like to remind you that according t0 articles 13 and 17 of the FIFA Statutes, all members associations have t0 manage their affairs independently and with no influence from third parties.
In addition and according to article 68 of the FIFA Statutes, recourse to ordinary courts of Law is prohibited unless specifically provided for in the FIFA regulations.
Furthermore, it is the duty of each member association to ensure that these provisions are implemented by its members and possibly take sanctions against those which fail to respect these obligations.
In view of the above, the decision of the Federal High Court in Jos, if implemented, would likely be considered as an interference in the internal affairs of the NFF and the case would be brought to the highest authorities of FIFA for consideration of sanctions, including the suspension of the NFF.
Lastly, we would like to Stress that the plaintiff in question already filed an appeal in relation to the same matter with the highest judicial Sport authorities, the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), and that said appeal was dismissed by the CAS on 18 May 2015.
We thank you for taking note of the above and kindly ask you to keep us informed of any development.
- (l Markus Kattner
Acting Secretary General