Re-elected president of Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), Melvin Amaju Pinnick has moved fast to prevent a repeat of the leadership tussle and crises that bedeviled his first term in office, as he is taking steps to reconcile all aggrieved stakeholders.
Pinnick stated as much in his first speech after re-election on Thursday in Katsina, with words that fotballlive.ng noted were laced with appeals to fellow candidates in this year’s election and those of 2014 to close ranks in order to join hands in taking Nigeria back to glory days in the game.
Pinnick, who becomes the first man in over 20 years to win re-election at the NFF elections, also heaped praises on President Muhammadu Buhari and top officials of the Federal Government for their huge efforts in sustaining association football in Nigeria.
Footballlive.ng can also report that the NFF supremo also thanked the governors of Delta and Edo States for what he called their full understanding and support.
He did not leave out players and officials of the various national teams, who Pinnick hailed for all their efforts in doing Nigeria proud at all times.
While pledging to focus more on youth development programs in his second tenure, Pinnick, who is also the first vice-president of Confederation of African Football (CAF), said there is no victor and no vanquished in the race.
FIFA observers, Luca Piazza and Solomon Mudege as well as CAF observer, Sita Sangare witnessed the opening ceremony and the entire elective congress on Thursday, at the end of which chairman of the Electoral Committee, Barrister Muhammed Sani Katu swore in Pinnick and his new board.
Next up for Pinnick is his formal inauguration as the first vice-president of CAF, at the African body’s extraordinary general assembly in Egypt on Sunday, 30th September.
After the day’s events, Pinnick disclosed: “We intend to set up a reconciliation team in a few days to reach out to aggrieved members of the football family with a view to bringing everyone under one umbrella and a united front in the pursuit of the greater good for Nigerian Football.
“We owe this country a lot, and we are committed to working hard to give back so much to it. We respectfully ask for more support as we start a new tenure.
“We aim to consolidate on our vision of building a sustainable football culture for our dear country, and continue the great march towards ensuring financial independence for the NFF.”