Solomon Dalung, Minister of Sports and Youth Development, has vowed that he would work to ensure that cases of parallel election does not occur in the country’s football.
Dalung gave the assurance ahead of the election into the executive 2018-2022 committee of the Nigerian Football Federation, NFF, slated for Thursday in Katsina State.
He noted that until the circle of parallel election ends in Nigeria, football cannot grow.
“The issue of parallel election started with Galadima. We have been living with parallel election since that time till date. So if we begin to pretend that there is a way we can cover it up, the injustice will continue to linger with us. But as far as I am concerned, I Solomon Salkat Dalung, will put my feet on the ground and ensure that we bring an end to this circle of parallel election. It must end, so that football can grow,” Dalung assured.
Nigerian football recently escaped a FIFA ban following interferences in the aftermath of the 2014 parallel elections in the federation.
Incumbent president, Amaju Pinnick, organised a separate election in Delta State, after his rival, Christopher Giwa, had held a separate election in Jos, Plateau State.
FIFA upheld Pinnick’s mandate as authentic, saying Giwa’s election failed to meet certain statutes as prescribed by it.
Giwa approached civil court in Nigeria for redress after he had been slammed an international ban by the world football governing body.
A Jos High Court ruling, backed by a Supreme Court’s stay of judgment, recognized his mandate, which triggered crisis and interferences in the country’s football leadership and a notice of ban by FIFA in August.
The-then Acting president, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, wrote to FIFA, acknowledging that the government only recognizes Pinnick as authentic NFF President.
Pinnick; former NFF President, Aminu Maigari; one-time NFF Secretary-General, Taiwo Ogunjobi; and new comer, Chinedu Okoye, have been cleared to contest the presidency on September 20.
No NFF president has served two terms in office, due to rancor that usually pervade the federation before and after elections.