June, 2 2022.
The Nigeria Football System is facing numerous daunting challenges, including a tidal wave of selfish interests from embattled club owners, one-sided Policies, pervasive corruption amongst other problems. But Paul Bassey, a seasoned administrator currently in at the helm of affairs at Akwa United, believes that with the current state of the Nation, Football in the country is not poised for stability and prosperity soon because those that run government are also involved in football.
From his experience, guiding Akwa United, Commercially, Club Competition will continue to be a burden on clubs. Winners of tournament walk away with a paltry sum and all the participating teams that spent millions of naira in qualifying for, and taking part in the competition receive little or no commercial benefit unlike in countries like South Africa where new modules were implemented over six years ago to restructure the game which has resulted in their clubs winning laurels in Confederation of Africa Football (CAF) championships.
Football, today in Nigeria cannot be run without government at this moment. Premier League Clubs spent Millions of Naira per match for feeding, transportation, accommodation and other expenses. Which Business Oriented Individual does that without getting anything in return? To get people to buy ticket from two hundred naira is a massive problem.
Down to Club Owners level, who at this instance, have a significant role to play but bane of selfish interest has compromise the unity. "Without crucifying anyone, the moment a chairman shares his opinion, another take offence but it's about who we are rather".
While corruption in football is a recognised fact worldwide, poverty in the country and the attitude of some players and officials makes them susceptible to betting and other inducements. It caused much controversy, players deliberately make mistakes and lose matches to earn millions rather than get little from Match bonuses to satisfy their needs. Given the fact that domestic players in many cases earn little. Highly Unfortunate that its an opportunity for a better life and the chance to earn amounts of money that they could previously only dream about.
Paul Bassey Extended his thoughts into the halls of power of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) voting system where he calls for amendments to the existing statues to have a fair representation of all Stakeholders on board.
He cried that the game hasn’t been helped by veto powers by Football Association Chairmen who offered little or nothing. Out of the 44 available votes, about 37 belongs to State Chairmen. Majority of these men are government appointee who doesn't have a history of football administration. What do they do? Nothing.
Administrator's paid these people for match organisation and supervision but if anything goes wrong, it's affects the clubs more. They just sit on the board of the NFF without doing nothing, where are the coaches, referees and Sport writers", He Lamented.
" No matter how good or knowledgeable you are, Only Football Association chairmen wins election because its a game of their own numbers", He concluded.