Ahead of September 30 Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) elective congress, one of the frontrunners for the office of NFF president, Barrister Seyi Akinwumi, has reiterated his resolve to run an-inclusive administration when elected to preside over the affairs of the country’s football.
He said his focus on grassroots football to bring a positive turn around to Nigeria’s football roadmap and enhance long awaited development.
“First of all when I emerge as the next NFF President, I think the most crucial thing is to stabilize the system and to stabilize the system is to run an all inclusive administration, essentially to give everybody the confidence that there would be on football family in Nigeria where everybody will be included.
So, the issue of inclusion and making sure people have the confidence about what we say we will do, is the first thing I am intending to look at.”
Akinwumi, who is the current first president of NFF and Lagos State FA chairman, believed an-inclusive administration where every stakeholders are carried along will eliminate bikerings in all quarters of the sport from people who feel they are barricaded from the affairs of the game.
“We have now for example people who are going to court, we have people who feel in the past they have been excluded. We need to ensure that everybody feels that way, we ought to all face the same direction to develop our football and if that is the case that will take a lot of hard work as the effect of what we will do before we go into any other thing else,” he said.
Speaking further, Akinwumi said his administration will not base on sponsorship alone to develop football in the country. “We have to ensure we have the business of football inculcated in our system. So we don’t talk about sponsorship alone. Sponsorship will be the icing on the cake. We have people who will invest in football because they are making profits from football. That’s the only way we can be sure that football can be sustained in this country.”
“For us to get people to put money in our football, we need to show that we have properties that they will put their money in and get returns. They need financial returns directly or indirectly because nobody wants to do business and not get any returns. So, the first thing is to change the system from top-bottom to bottom-top which means now we have the FAs doing the grassroots work.
“I have said several times that once the FAs are the ones doing the grassroots work we can change football because we will give them money from the NFF.”
Akinwumi, member of the Presidential 10 years master plan for football in Nigeria assured that he will inculcate his ideology in the master plan to take football to the pinnacle when he emerges the NFF President by ensuring that football development originates from the state level to the national and not otherwise.