Stop Nigerian Leagues Kick Off, Forum Insists, Threatens To Petition FIFA, CAF

    File photo: Vincent Akinbami (middle) while briefing newsmen at the New Nigerian Newspapers, Kaduna on Thursday October 17, 2019. On his right is Mr. Ogbonna Wadson.

    *vows to use courts to stop kick off if….

    By KATO P. LADAN, Kaduna

    Citing several irregularities that categorize the professional football leagues in the country, a group, Forum For Better Organised Nigeria League And Club Sides, has called for postponement of the kick off of the season for Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) and the Nigeria National League (NNL).

    The forum expressed this at a press briefing, held at the New Nigerian Newspapers (NNN), Corporate head office in Kaduna on Thursday October 17, 2019, where it threatened to drag the issue before FIFA and CAF.

    ” If our call is not adhered to in two weeks, we will be forced to call the attention of FIFA and CAF to non-adherence to club licensing requirement criteria by our clubs and go to court to stop the league from starting.

    “Considering the unprofessional manner Nigeria league has been ran over the years and the amateurish nature of our acclaimed professional football clubs, we have come out to say that things cannot continue like these, we will not fold our arms and continue to see mediocrity in the running of our club sides and management of our league,it will be a shame if we bequeath these bad and unorganized system to the next generation.

    “Our so called club owners especially those of the government have always used their influence with the governors or government officials to manipulate the league managers and the other way round.

    “We are therefore calling on the minister of sport,Nigeria football federation president and all stakeholders around the federation to stop the league from kicking off and call a stakeholders meeting for reforms that will include the regulations we have highlighted,” they said.

    Coordinator of the group, Vincent Akinbami listed absence of transparency and accountability in players transfer system in Nigeria league system, referee’s appointment for Nigeria league matches are highly manipulated, all Nigeria professional league sides do not meet up with regulatory requirement, based on the fact that they are all limited liability company’s (Requirement to play in the league say’s they must be private limited) and absence of financial reporting as part of the factors preventing growth of the  league.

    “No financial and operational regulation, those in place are not adhered to. Players  welfare inadequate. Above all, the club licensing requirement (5) five criteria put in place by FIFA and CAF are not being met,” he added.

    As a way out, he explained that, that is why they have come up with some regulations that must be in place before they will allow the league to kickoff. 

    “This regulation is just part of future regulations that will make our league professional as against the amateurish way it is being ran now and also make our clubs to be ran professionally.

    “(1) RETURNS-Quarterly/Half year returns to the league boards by clubs of the Following-Bank statement-two bank account (a) for money from directors or support (b) for income and expenses.

    ” Banks acknowledgement copy of salary payroll. All players must have a salary account. (All player’s salary must be paid to the bank).

    “List of players sold and amount (traceable to the bank). List of players bought and amount (traceable to the bank). List of debtors. List of creditors.

    “(2) TRAINING-To train football club accountant and Auditors on preparation of football clubs financial statement that will comply with international financial reporting standard (IFRS) with emphasis on valuation on player’s contract,players trading,impairment, and other accounting police.Clubs should submit financial statement to league board and federal inland revenue service, as tax clearance certificate should be requirement to register for a new season.

    “(3)TRANSFERS & ACADEMY-(a) Aside from the forms from LMC and national league board filled by the players, the contractual agreement between the players and the clubs must be submitted to the LMC and national league board (b) All the clubs must have the list of all it registered players,numbers of years of contract signed, numbers of years of contract left in  a portal for the whole world to see at every point in time.(c) Every club in the Nigeria premier league and national league must have an under 18 team with the names , ages and passport off the players available for all to see.(d) A league should be established for the under 18 teams.(e) All other FIFA rules on transfers should be strictly adhered to.

    ” (4) REFEREE-A referee organization should be registered and incorporated model to the one in England and make it independence of the NFF.Men and Women of integrity picked to head it.

    (5) PLAYERS INSURANCE-Players and officials of clubs should have a pension scheme and group life/group accident

    “(6) The club licensing requirement criteria should be met by clubs and strictly adhered to. (1) SPORTING CRITERIA (2) FINANCIAL CRITERIA (3) LEGAL CRITERIA (4) INFRASTRUCTURAL CRITERIA (5) PERSONNEL ADMINISTRATION CRITERIA

    “(7) Financial fair play-To prevent clubs from spending more than they earn, help avoid clubs from falling into long time financial problem as they pursue short-term success.

    “(8) Internal Audit department- That will monitor the financial and operation system of the clubs and the league.

    ” (9) A fixture for all league matches for the2019/2020 season that will end in May should be made available.


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