BY Idris Shehu
Amaju Pinnick, president of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), has opened up on his decision to abstain from seeking a third term in office.
In April 2022, the NFF president, who is in the twilight of his second term, had ruled out a third term bid.
Although Pinnick said he had consulted his family over the decision, he failed to state the reasons that informed the move.
However, in a chat with Arise TV on Monday, the NFF president said some people hate him “for no reason” and that he is tired of dealing with “bitterness and hatred”.
Pinnick added that he is constantly humiliated and ridiculed by the “institutions that are meant to protect”.
“I love this country but the issue of hate and bitterness. Institutions that are meant to protect you are the ones opening you up for humiliation, ridicule and possible annihilation,” he said.
“There are 7.7 billion people in the world but there are only 37 people in FIFA and a Nigerian is one of them. It is good enough for us, but some people want that flag to be removed. I’m not against criticism.
“A lot of Nigerians have called about my third term bid. They said, ‘Pinnick, we are building this country and you must be an integral part of it.’ But I said listen, ‘I love Nigeria but my family is key and number one’. Every time, I’m having issues, my family is tired.
“For now, I said ‘no’ and I still stand by it because you don’t want to go to a terrain where bitterness, hatred, and animosity are, for no reason other than the fact that it is Amaju Pinnick. If you ask any of the haters what has Pinnick done wrong; if they tell me today I will resign.”
Allegations of corruption, lack of transparency and accountability have dogged the NFF in recent years.
Pinnick has come under intense scrutiny over his handling of the affairs of the NFF, with his critics accusing him of misusing the funds of the football body.