The Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Mr Solomon Dalung, on Tuesday congratulated the Federal Government for averting a FIFA ban on Nigeria Football Federation (NFF).
In a statement made available in Abuja on Tuesday by the minister’s Special Assistant on Media, Nneka Ikem Anibeze, quoted the minister as lauding the efforts of the Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo which aborted the ban.
Dalung said, “ I welcome the intervention of Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, which saved Nigeria from a suspension threat by FIFA in the lingering crisis of the FootbaIl Federation.
“I believe in the resolution of the crisis which has a history dating back to almost 20 years since the removal of Mr Anthony Kojo Williams from office.
“This crisis cannot be solved with a temporary measure or scratched on the surface.
The intervention of the vice-president should not be viewed as different from an attempt to abate an escalating situation.”
He, however, said that there was a subsisting judgement of the Supreme Court of Nigeria on the matter.
He said, “As a barrister and solicitor of the Supreme Court of Nigeria, who took oath of office to protect and defend the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, I will prefer to stand with the rule of law instead of the opinion of men.
“I want to appeal to Nigerians to remain calm and give support to the NFF Elders Stakeholders Reconciliation Committee which is made up of reputable past presidents and general secretaries of the NFF with vast knowledge, experience and competence to resolve this crisis once and for all.
“We are a constitutional democracy and the doctrine of separation of powers is the foundation of democratic experience, therefore, the rule of law is the only mechanism that guarantees liberty and freedom of citizens.
“This administration was elected on the change mantra meaning that impunity has no accommodation anywhere, so Nigerians must learn to believe and practise the doctrine of the rule of law.
“I believe we shall overcome this if we remain within the confines and dictates of the laws of our country.
“As we celebrate Sallah, let’s remain law abiding citizens.”
FIFA on Monday stepped down its plan to ban Nigeria’s football governing body over its leadership crisis.
In stepping down the threat, FIFA said it received assurances that the legitimate leadership of Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) under the presidency of Amaju Pinnick and General Secretary Mohammed Sanusi had been restored to office.
“In view of these circumstances, FIFA deems that the conditions set by the decision of the Bureau of the FIFA Council have now been met and consequently the suspension of the NFF will not take effect.
“FIFA will continue to closely monitor the situation in order to ensure that FIFA’s rules and regulations are fully adhered to,” the world football body said.