FIFA have turned down a meeting with a Nigerian delegation proposed by Sports Minister, Solomon Dalung, as the NFF try to sort out the country’s football crisis. Earlier this week, the world football governing body issued an ultimatum to Nigeria, giving the country a deadline of August 20, to restore and recognise Amaju Pinnick as the legitimate president of the NFF, or face a ban.
Dalung wrote to FIFA on Wednesday, proposing a meeting between FIFA president, Gianni Infantino and a 15-man Nigerian delegation headed by himself. The delegation was to include both the NFF President, Pinnick and Christopher Giwa, who claims to have been elected NFF president.
However, in a letter signed by its General Secretary, Fatma Samoura, FIFA not only turned down the meeting request but reminded Dalung of the deadline. “We regret to inform you that we are not in a position to respond favourably to your request for an appointment with the FIFA Ieadership. In fact, the FIFA President is indisposed during the proposed period.
“Moreover, we would Iike to recall that one member of the proposed delegation, Mr Chris Giwa, is currently under a worldwide ban, in accordance with the decision of the FIFA DiscipIinary Committee dated 10 January 2017 to extend the five-year ban from taking part in any kind of football-related activity imposed by the Nigeria FootbaIl Federation’s (NFF) Disciplinary Committee on 12 May 2016.
“We would like to seize this opportunity to remind you that as per the decision rendered by FIFA’s Bureau of the Council on 13 August 2018, in the event the NFF offices are not handed back to the legitimate NFF Executive Committee under President Amaju Melvin Pinnick by Monday, 20 August 2018 at 12:00 (CET) the NFF will be suspended with immediate effect for contravening binding obligations of the FIFA Statutes,” Samoura wrote.