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NFF…Still laughing

By Paul Bassey
I have always taken every opportunity to say that this country is so unique that you cannot find its like any where in the world.

Sunday, when news broke that nine members of the thirteen man  NFF board had met to impeach the president, his first vice and the chairman of the technical committee, I did say that we aint heard nothing yet.

For me, this was a new dimension to the unfolding drama, one that was likely to trigger other reactions. Less than twelve hours later the second vice chairman of the board, Chief Oyuki Obaseki,the ‘moving train’, ( derailed several times by  Lulu and Uchegbulam) came out fuming. He said in the absence of Lulu and Uchegbulam, he should be the one to call the shots and called on his colleagues to resign en masse, that their action was an afterthought.

If you are wandering why the three musketeers were dethroned, yet Chief Obaseki did not appear in the picture, the answer is simple. In his quest to take the domestic league to a higher plane, Chief Obaseki was frequently battered by Lulu and Uchegbulam and this led to his suspension. ( yes they they delighted in suspending all those who opposed them ….Singabele, Owumi, Obaseki, Pinnick……

It got so bad that Chief Obaseki stopped attending meetings of the NFF. He also knows that he became irrelevant in the set up, no wonder his colleagues forgot that he existed. Another reason for the Obaseki neglect could be that with the election of Davidson Owumi to lead the league board, chief Obaseki’s tenure had elapsed as Owumi automatically became the second vice president of the NFF.

I digress.

When news filtered in, that there was a new ‘NFF board’ I said to myself that this, was just the beginning of a lot of revelations. I want football stakeholders to keep very close to their heart the weighty statement released by Maigari and co as reasons for impeaching Lulu.

I sensed trouble when I got a call from Abuja yesterday morning that members of the interim management who had gone to be sworn in, were still waiting, not knowing what was going on. I also got a call that Dr Amos Adamu member of CAF and FIFA was in town!

Despite all this, I was resolute in concluding that the federal government was going to call the bluff of FIFA. That we do not have to participate in international competitions if we believe we do not have a team so to do.

Then came the shock, that members of the new NFF board met with Mr. President and he decided to rescind the decision of the two year ban, even as he asked Maigari and co to go take football to a higher level (?). I do not want to say I am disappointed. I have been told to accept this as a ‘wise decision’ from a President who listens. That though his decision was spot on, the banning clause was considered harsh for the youth and for women football.

I don’t know about youth football in this country, yet I hold my peace. Were we scared of FIFA? No comment.
Leave me to continue my laughter.

A place in history

Today the Netherlands and Uruguay will go for a place in history. For the Netherlands they will be inching nearer a world cup they have never won despite semi final placings in 1974 and 1978

Uruguay, the last country to qualify for the world cup, the fifth best in South America have gotten here for the first time since 1970. However they still cling to their two victories in 1930 and 1950.

This is the second time ever the two countries will be meeting in the world cup since Holland beat Uruguay 2-0 in Hanover in1974.

Will the Dutch be mentally prepared to do away with the joy of eliminating Brazil? Will Diego Forlan continue to support this one man team?

Ninety or more minutes at the Green Point Stadium in Cape Town will tell.
See you tomorrow.


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