Elections to the executive committee of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) may still be a year away, but already there have been some bold moves by some of the major stakeholders with strong indications now that Anambra FA boss and owner of FC Ifeanyiubah, Patrick Ifeanyi Ubah, is ready to bankroll the return of Aminu Maigari as president.
SCORENigeria understands that Ifeanyi Ubah is “hugely disappointed” with his friend Amaju Pinnick, who incidentally was a creation of Maigari at the controversial Warri polls three years ago.
Ifeanyi Ubah, it was further gathered, put at Pinnick’s disposal his huge financial resources during last year’s visit of FIFA President Gianni Infantino to Nigeria.
It has also been speculated that the oil mogul was the first to foot the salaries of Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr before a corporate sponsor was finally secured for the Franco-German coach.
The arrangement was for Pinnick to move upstairs to the CAF executive committee, which he has since done, and for the Nnewi billionaire to replace him as the NFF chief.
But that will no longer be the case as Pinnick wants to stay put as the NFF big chief.
Not to also forget that when the oil tycoon was locked up by the country’s security operatives, it was only one of the NFF executives who visited him at Kuje.
The other NFF chieftains including his best friend Pinnick preferred to treat him as a leper and stayed well clear of him.
Ifeanyi Ubah now wishes to take his pound of flesh by ensuring Pinnick does not return for a second term, something that has not be achieved in recent times.
And his trump card is no other person than Maigari, who is no longer on speaking terms with “the boy I installed as NFF president” and has almost vanished from the spotlight.
Ifeanyi Ubah has since sponsored Maigari for a surgery on his troublesome knee in the United States of America.
One of the most successful NFF presidents – 2013 AFCON and World Cup Round of 16 – has also been locked up in discussions with senior government officials.
One big question now is – which direction will his loyalists and die-hards on the NFF board toe when the battle lines are finally drawn?