Tuesday, July 5, 2022
MARKET UPDATE
Advertisement

TheCable

NFF couldn’t access FIFA grant for 3 years over accountability issues, says Shina Okeleji

NFF couldn’t access FIFA grant for 3 years over accountability issues, says Shina Okeleji
April 14
11:53 2022

Oluwashina Okeleji, the sports journalist, says the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) could not claim FIFA grant for three years because of accountability issues.

Shina spoke in a chat with 90MinutesAfrica, an online news programme hosted by Rudolf Okonkwo and Chido Onumah.

The BBC journalist revealed he got the scoop from a FIFA official in 2018, saying NFF was denied the annual grant thrice because it failed to defend the projects it listed.

He said the federation gets “about $1.6million every year” from FIFA, alongside other sponsorship deals but “there is no accountability on how this money is spent, and where it goes”.

Advertisement

He referenced the persistent cases of corruption in football administration in the country as a hindrance to the development of the sports in Nigeria.

“Everybody talks about corruption in football, but nobody wants to address it,” Okeleji said.

“There has been no accountability in terms of the money that comes into football in Nigeria. There is the sponsorship money, there is the grant from FIFA, about $1.6 million every year, there is the World Cup bonus and participation fee, and there is money from the sponsors of the NFF.

Advertisement

“There is no accountability on how this money is spent, and where it goes to. Since 2004 there has been no year that I didn’t write about corruption in Nigeria Football Federation, whether the coach is unpaid, the players are crying over unpaid bonuses and allowances, or they are being kicked out of hotels because the NFF didn’t settle hotel bills.

“The NFF will tell you they are always cash-trapped, but they are getting funding from FIFA, they are getting money from the government.

“Under Sepp Blatter (former president of FIFA), football federations were free to do what they wanted with their allocation,” Okeleji remarked.

“But under the current leadership of Giovanni Infantino, you need to come up with a plan on how you want to spend your allocation.

Advertisement

“Nigeria could not claim that money for three years because every time they sent documents, they couldn’t defend it. No one knows where the money goes to. The NFF audits their own account, and they tell you we are clean. And it is difficult for the government to investigative because FIFA will say you can’t interfere in the running of football.”

On his part, Amr Fahmy, a journalist from Egypt, called on FIFA to create more mechanisms to monitor how money given to football federations in Africa is utilised to curb corruption

“FIFA supports federations, but they do not follow up with the federations to know what they do with the money,” he said.

Advertisement

0 Comments

No Comments Yet!

There are no comments at the moment, do you want to add one?

Write a comment

Write a Comment