Akin Akinbobola, Senior Special Adviser on Sports to Ondo State Government, has commended the Sports Minister Bolaji Abdulahi for making efforts to resolve the leadership crisis rocking the Nigeria Premier League (NPL).
Akinbobola had challenged the adoption of Rumson Baribote as chairman of the NPL board following the removal of Davidson Owumi by a Federal High Court order.
Akinbobola, an estranged board member of the NPL, had decried the handling of the matter by the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) since after the controversial elections.
He told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Monday in Lagos via a telephone interview that the NFF had written to the NPL to further investigate the matter.
``I think the Minister is doing very well, in the sense that what he met on ground was like a rot.
``So it takes time to clean up rot, the Minister has good intention and he has taken some very right steps.
“But I would not want to comment so much about the attitude of stakeholders involved in this my matter, because I don’t want it to look like I am stepping on them.
``I think with the directive of the Minister, by now, they ought to have taken action appreciably to the extent that as a matter of fact we ought to have concluded this issue now.
``But I want to say that the NFF has written a letter to the NPL and the executive secretary has responded to the letter written by the NFF and I am aware of this.
``And we are waiting and hoping that based on the response from the executive secretary of the NPL, the NFF will take a step further by giving the directive to the Appeals Committee to hear and look into the matter.
``I will get in contact with the Minister this week to let him know that this issue is dragging too long.
``And like you know justice delayed is justice denied, so I want a situation where there won’t be much more delay.’’
NAN reports that the though the court had ordered a re-run of the NPL board election, the election was not conducted as directed.
Akinbobola said that he had lodged an appealed in line with existing protocols and urged the NFF to direct the Appeal Committee to investigate the matter.
Meanwhile, NPL’s Executive Secretary, Tunji Babalola, said the body would swing into action as soon as it received directive from the NFF.
``It’s our not our own responsibility. It is the NFF that will give us go ahead, because NPL is subordinate to NFF and we are just an affiliate of the NFF.
``They are the one that will give us the go ahead. We cannot do anything on our own, once that directive is given, we will act immediately.’’