Nigeria risk a FIFA ban which could impact their World Cup qualifying campaign after a court on Friday sacked the executive committee of the country’s football federation (NFF).
It is the second time in less than two years that the Super Eagles have potentially fallen foul of the world governing body — in July 2014, FIFA warned it would suspend Nigeria after a court order prevented the NFF from running the sport.
The order was later shelved and the country was not sanctioned.
But a FIFA ban now could affect the country’s participation in the qualifying tournament for the 2018 World Cup, which begins in October.
It will also mean the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations champions and clubs from the country cannot feature in international competitions.
On Friday, federal high court judge Musa Haruna Kurya in the central city of Jos upheld all the previous orders of the court effectively making Chris Giwa the head of the NFF until the final determination of the suit.
Deposed head Amaju Pinnick, who came into office in September 2014, confirmed the ruling.
“It is sad we are taking football matters to court. The NFF will file for stay of execution and later appeal the case,” he said.
Lawyers of the sacked NFF executive also said they will appeal the ruling.
“Certainly, we shall go to the Court of Appeal as we are not satisfied with the decisions of the court in this matter,” said one of the lawyers, Damon Dashe. They have 21 days to do so.
Two years ago, Giwa claimed he had been elected president of the NFF, but FIFA did not endorse the vote.
In September 2014, Pinnick, then Delta FA chairman, was elected NFF boss to replace Aminu Maigari in a vote that was also severally flawed.