By George Aluo
Nigeria’s FIFA licensed match agent and stadium facilities expert, Ebi Egbe, has hailed Tuesday’s court judgment in which the leadership of the nation’s soccer governing body, NFF were discharged and acquitted over alleged corruption.
The Chieftains of the Nigeria Football Federation, including its President, Mr. Amaju Melvin Pinnick were discharged and acquitted on all counts of alleged corruption charges in a case brought by the defunct Special Presidential Investigation Panel, SPIP.
Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu dismissed the entire case with all 16 charges, and acquitted the NFF chieftains in consideration of the submission of the defence and the prosecution and in line with the rules of administration of criminal justice.
Speaking on the judgement, Egbe who is the Chief Executive Officer of Monimichelle said the development is victory for Nigerian football, even as he charged stakeholders to rally round Amaju and his board in the interest of Nigerian football.
“As I have always said, Nigerian interest should come first and not that of aggrieved individuals. With this court judgement, I think all the distractions should stop. We need to remain focused and plan how to move the game forward in our country. There is no Progressive mind that should support this “Pull Them Down” thing. Nigeria is at the moment bidding to host the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup. If we don’t put our house in order, we won’t get the hosting right. With distractions, we can’t do well in international tournaments and the sponsors won’t be there to support the game. That our league don’t have a title sponsor today is a fallout of the distractions the NFF board is facing. Now that the court has cleared Amaju and his team, I think enough is enough,” Egbe said.
The youthful Bayelsa soccer buff who is in Germany attending a three-day seminar on Stadium facilities said his company, Monimichelle would on its part continue to pursue its vision of making Nigerian stadium facilities, especially the turfs better.