The world football governing body, FIFA, has suspended the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) with immediate effect, on account of government interference.
The body’s Emergency Committee’s decision is coming after a letter sent by FIFA to the NFF on July 4, in which it expressed its great concern after the NFF was served with court proceedings and consequently an order preventing the president of the NFF, the NFF Executive Committee members and the NFF Congress from running the affairs of Nigerian football was granted by a High Court of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
After the court order the Nigerian Minister of Sports appointed a senior member of the civil service to manage the NFF until the matter was heard in court.
The authorities then appointed a person who decided to convene an extraordinary general assembly on 5 July 2014. This extraordinary general assembly was convened in violation of the NFF statutes.
Originally, an elective congress had been planned by the NFF to take place on 26 August 2014.
The suspension will be lifted once the court actions have been withdrawn and the properly elected NFF Executive Committee, the NFF general assembly and the NFF administration are able to work without any interference in their affairs.
Article 13, par. 1 and article 17, par. 1 of the FIFA Statutes oblige member associations to manage their affairs independently and with no influence from third parties.
It bars teams, including clubs, from Nigeria form taking part in any international sporting event, as provided by article 14 par. 3 of the FIFA Statutes.
During the period of suspension, the NFF may not be represented in any regional, continental or international competitions, including at club level, or in friendly matches.
The most immediate effect is that Nigeria will not be entitled to participate in the upcoming FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup (5-24 August 2014) should the suspension not be lifted by 15 July 2014.