Nigeria move to end football crisis as Congress lifts ban on faction leader Chris Giwa

The nation's apex decision-making body has removed the ban on the factional leader and four others in latest move to resolve its football crisis

Nigeria Football Federation Congress on Thursday resolved to lift a ban on factional president Chris Giwa and other four others as part of the move to resolve its recurring leadership crisis.

The NFF factional leader alongside four others - namely Muazu Suleyman, Yahaya Adama, Sani Fema and Johnson Effiong were banned for five years in May 2016, which was extended by CAF, having breached the NFF rules, largely on taking football matters to ordinary courts.

Their ban followed Giwa’s claims that the September 30, 2014 election which installed Amaju Pinnick in office was faulty before losing his case at FIFA and the Court of Arbitration for Sports.

Following Wednesday’s delayed move in the bid to vacate an order by a Jos High Court, recognising Giwa as authentic NFF president, and afterwards adjourning for September 25.

At its extraordinary congress in Benin, the NFF general assembly resolved to remove the ban, pending the withdrawal of legal matters in court by Giwa led board two weeks.

“Ensure the dismissal of all pending Court cases against NFF and its leadership, within 2 weeks of this resolution,” the Congress' communique read.

“File affidavits in court to affirm to be bound by and uphold the football statutes and, undertake not to take any football matter to court but, to resolve any disputes and/or grievances within the available alternative dispute resolutions mechanism enshrined in the football statutes.

“Upon the fulfilment of 1 and 2 above, the Congress hereby empowers the NFF Executive Committee to immediately commence the process of unbanning and/or removing any penalties on persons that are currently under sanctions for breaches of the NFF Statutes, provided they first comply fully by withdrawing the court cases and filing the required affidavits.”

The Congress further resolved to review its suspension of Giwa FC that was expelled from the Nigeria Professional Football League, having breached its rules after deliberately missing three cumulative matches within a season in 2016, and subsequently, permits its participation in the ongoing 2018 Nigeria National League.

On NFF September 29 elections, it's resolved to pick a new date in the bid to reopen the process to accommodate qualified interested stakeholders, including the unbanned factional board headed by Giwa and avoid clashing with Caf Extra-ordinary General Congress billed for the same date in Egypt.