In a statement signed by the Ministry of Sports’ Director, Press and Public Relations, Manga Mohammed and made available to The Guardian, the Federal Government called on stakeholders in Nigerian football to “remain calm and abide by the court order, by not doing anything or taking any further steps particularly, as regards the NFF elections scheduled for Friday, September 30, 2022, in Benin.”
It said the ministry’s Permanent Secretary, Ismaila Abubakar, gave the advice in Abuja, adding: “The ministry is not oblivious of the recent developments concerning the elective congress of NFF, which, ordinarily, had been scheduled to take place on September 2022.
“The ministry is also aware of the court order made by Hon. Justice I.E. Ekwo of the Federal High Court on September 15, 2022, whereby the court had directed all parties, including NFF and the Minister of Youth and Sports Development to maintain status quo ante pending the final Order of Court.”
According to the statement, the Permanent Secretary also advised all the defendants in the case to abide by the court order.
It said: “Flowing from the above order of the court, which had also been served on the Office of the Honorable Minister of Youth and Sports Development, as the third defendant in the case under reference, the Minister will obey and abide by the court order and hereby advises all other defendants in this case, including NFF, to abide by the order of court by not doing anything or taking any further step(s); particularly, as regard NFF elections that will be or could be interpreted to amount to disobedience to a lawful court order or contempt of court. ”
The Permanent Secretary explained that the public knows the NFF, under Nigeria’s existing law, as NFA (NFA ACT 2004), which is one of the parastatals under the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development.
He added that the “Ministry is studying all processes served on it concerning this case, and will take appropriate steps or action to defend itself within the context permitted by the law of our land.
“Stakeholders in the Nigeria football family are therefore urged to remain calm and law-abiding as the ministry seeks a resolution.”