NIGERIA’S footballing owes have continued today as an Abuja high court ordered the arrest of Nigerian Football Federation (NFF) president Amaju Pinnick over allegations that he and several other officials were involved in corruption.
In April this year, President Muhammadu Buhari ordered the immediate prosecution of the Mr Pinnick over allegations that he was involved in a multi-billion scam. Mr Pinnick, who was recently elected for a second term as NFF president, has been under investigation by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) concerning how the federation’s funds are spent.
According to the EFCC preliminary report, the domiciliary accounts of the NFF domiciled with Zenith Bank and UBA had received total inflow of $16.41m from Fifa and the Confederation of African Football between January 2014 and June 2016. In a six-page report, EFCC chairman Ibrahim Magu had informed President Buhari that the anti-graft agency had investigated and prosecuted the NFF director of finance Christopher Andekin, its head of administration Jafaru Mamzah and a cashier Rajan Zaka, over an alleged financial scam connected to payments from Fifa and the Confederation of African Football (Caf) to the NFF between 2014 and 2016.
This morning, Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu of the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja ordered the arrest of Mr Pinnick and four others over the alleged fraud. After hearing the case against them, Justice Ojukwu issued a bench warrant for the arrest as none of the accused were in court.
Those to be arrested include the NFF secretary Sanusi Mohammed, first vice president Seyi Akinwumi, second vice president Shehu Dikko and executive committee member Yusuf Fresh. In May, Mr Pinnick and four other NFF officials were charged with the misappropriation of $8,400 paid as a subvention by global footballing body Fifa.
At the moment, Mr Pinnick is in Egypt with the Super eagles who are participating in the African Cup of Nations. He was ion the stadium in Alexandria yesterday when the Eagles lost their final group game, succumbing to a 0-2 loss to Madagascar.