Former WAFU Boss Calls for Truce in NFF Crisis

*Asks sports minister to call Giwa to order
By Duro Ikhazuagbe
Former President of West Africa Football Union (WAFU), Jonathan Ogufere, has called on the Minister of Sports, Solomon Dalung to save Nigeria football from Chris Giwa and his group who are determined to earn the country suspension from FIFA.
Speaking at the weekend, Ogufere who is also the chairman of Sports Veterans Association, an umbrella body for past sportsmen and administrators, noted with dismay that the Jos-based club proprietor has continued unabated in his determination to be the president of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) irrespective of whether his ambition could earn Nigeria a long-term suspension by FIFA.
“The minister of sports (Dalung) cannot afford to keep quiet. He needs to restore peace. We are totally dismayed that after an issue has gone to the highest court in sports (Court of Arbitration for Sports)  and has been settled, some people are still using it to destabilise Nigerian football,” observed the respected former WAFU boss.
Ogufere recalled that Nigeria barely escaped FIFA ban when this crisis started two years ago.
“Nigeria barely escaped a FIFA ban the last time this issue came up. We should not portray ourselves like a nation that is not ready to abide by international rules. For the goodness of our youths and our football this issue should be nipped in the bud immediately.
“I am not just speaking as an individual.  This is the way, we the Veterans in Nigerian sports feel. We’ve been watching and cannot continue to keep quiet. We are not happy with what is going on in Nigerian football. Those heating up the football scene in the country should realise the damage their action is creating for Nigeria.”
He urged those hell-bent in taking over the administration of the NFF to wait for Amaju Pinnick’s four-year tenure to end.
 “To be president and board members of NFF is not a  matter of life and death. Whosoever that is aspiring to get to the NFF should wait till after the four years of the current board.
“It is about time this issue is settled once and for all. If you lose an election you keep calm and wait for another time. It shouldn’t be a do or die affair or matter of life and death. It is unnecessarily disturbing the sporting atmosphere in Nigeria. Going to regular court runs foul of FIFA rules. Nobody forced us to join FIFA and once we are there we must abide by the rules. Nobody is saying FIFA laws are superior to that of Nigeria. We are not talking about superiority now but respecting ourselves as a member of the international football community,” stressed Ogufere.