The outgoing President of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) Amaju Pinnick, has denied the insinuation in some quarters that he has a preferred candidate to succeed him ahead of his exit from office in a few weeks’ time.
After Pinnick cleared the air about him seeking a third term in office, he has denied the fresh rumours that he is backing a particular candidate for the 30 September polls billed to take place in Benin City. Edo State.
The FIFA Council Member, who is also part of the CAF Executive Committee, made this clarification on Wednesday at his office when he met with the three members of his Executive board who are all interested in becoming the next NFF President.
Those in Wednesday’s meeting are the current NFF 1st Vice President Seyi Akinwunmi; 2nd Vice President/LMC Chairman, Shehu Dikko and the current chairman of club chairmen, Ibrahim Musa Gusau.
The trio obtained forms to contest for the number one position in Nigeria Football at the upcoming NFF Elective General Assembly.
Pinnick, who is a few weeks away from completing an eight-year (two terms) in office, advised all the interested candidates to go about their ambition in the most peaceful manner.
“I have called this meeting to assure you all that I do not have a candidate in this race. Each and every one of you is my candidate because we worked and walked together in the past eight years, seeking the best for Nigeria Football.
“I believe that you are all aiming for the position in order to be able to consolidate on the little gains that we were able to make and to preserve or even surpass our legacies,” Pinnick said in an official statement issued on his behalf by the NFF Director of Communication, Ademola Olajire.
Pinnick added: “I urge you all to go about the campaigns with utmost decency, avoid any form of acerbic outpourings and remember that we all belong to the same family that worked for the best interests of Nigeria Football for the past eight years. I wish each and everyone of you the very best with the voting college.”
Akinwunmi, who is also Chairman of the Lagos State Football Association, is up against Gusau, Chairman of the Zamfara State Football Association and Dikko, among others, including former international player Idah Peterside, CAF’s Head of Safety and Security, Christian Emeruwa, and former Chairman of Kano Pillars, Abba Abdullahi Yola.
“The desire to serve should never be a do-or-die affair. We remain one indivisible family committed to the growth of Nigeria Football.,” Pinnick added.
“I will still be there to provide support and encouragement to whoever wins. As a Member of FIFA and CAF highest bodies, I am still a principal stakeholder in Nigeria Football. Our football deserves the best candidate with the best programmes that will take the game to higher heights.”
Other interested individuals have until midnight on Thursday, 8th September 2022 to pick up their forms.