At Last, NFF Receives $1m Covid-19 Palliatives from FIFA

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By Duro Ikhazuagbe

At last, the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) has received the $1 million Covid-19 palliatives promised by world football governing body, FIFA, to help football stakeholders in the country cushion the effects of the pandemic.

President of the NFF, Amaju Pinnick, confirmed the good news to football stakeholders yesterday via his verified Twitter handle.

Pinnick who explained how the $1 million will be utilized, also revealed that the federation has also received the $600,000 fund for the FIFA Forward 2.0 projects in Birnin-Kebbi and Ugborodo (Escravos) in Delta State.

“Huge appreciation to football’s world governing body, FIFA, for the $1 million (one million dollars) the Federation has received in the frame of COVID-19 palliatives. The money was received by the the NFF and we re-confirmed the purpose from FIFA two days ago.

“FIFA also sent $600,000 to the Federation for the FIFA Forward 2.0 projects in Birnin-Kebbi and Ugborodo. At $300,000 each, it will enable the mini-stadia in both centres to start at a very good pace, as we earmark completion by the end of March 2021.

“As a further break down, the $1 million for palliatives is composed of $500,000 for men’s football and $500,000 for the women’s game.”

He added:”FIFA has also promised to send the Federation an additional $500,000 sometime in January 2021, also as part of COVID-19 palliative efforts.

“On the continent, we have received confirmation from CAF that the Federation will receive the expected $300,000 from the Confederation on or before Sunday, the 1st of November. With the $200,000 we have already ring-fenced from our sponsors’ funds for the purpose the coast will then be clear for us to start the disbursement of funds to the beneficiaries, as captured in our approved template, from next week.

“Even though we are bolstered by the guidelines from FIFA strictly outlying the purposes of these funds as well as the approval of the the NFF Executive Board, we will also interface with our auditors, PricewaterhouseCoopers, on each and every line item, to ensure the disbursements conform to global best practices.

“Beneficiaries MUST ensure 100% compliance to guidelines by ensuring that all funds are paid into designated accounts.

“I would also like to thank all beneficiaries for their patience and understanding at these trying times.

“Finally, I would like to wish FIFA President, Gianni Infantino God’s speed as he recovers from the pandemic,” concludes the NFF Chief on the social media yesterday afternoon.