Close watchers of Nigeria football are now wondering how top NFF officials hope they can wriggle out of the corruption charges against them simply by imposing the son of the country’s security chief on the final squad to the U17 World Cup in Brazil.
Abba Bichi, a student in China, was a shock inclusion on the final Golden Eaglets squad to the U17 World Cup, which starts on October 26 in Brazil.
He will be 16 in December and the FIFA official squad announcement has it that he will wear jersey No 19 and he is a talent of Talentbase FC in Nigeria.
Bichi Junior has yet to see action in the warm-up games the Eaglets have so far played in readiness to the World Cup.
Sources close to the Eaglets camp were unanimous that the boy is not good enough to be on the squad, but he was listed on the orders of NFF top shots.
This writer has watched the boy play at the FIFA Goal Project in Abuja and he is undeserving of a place on the final squad.
There is a long list of better players including those who did not even make it to Brazil.
Coach Manu Garba reportedly kicked against the selection of the younger Bichi, but he was told in very unclear terms he also has an option to head back to Nigeria.
It was alleged that this “political player” plan was initiated and executed by NFF vice president Shehu Dikko in a most desperate move to get a favourable report from the country’s top security agency.
SCORENigeria further gathered that Daniel Dalung, the nephew of immediate past sports minister Solomon Dalung was also on this jamboree to Brazil that the cash-strapped NFF cannot afford.
He did not make the final cut.
All these have shown that top officials impose players on national teams for their selfish ends contrary to their claims.
SCORENigeria first reported that the son of the DSS chief was smuggled on the trip to Brazil.
The plan by desperate NFF officials led by president Amaju Pinnick, who will appear in court in Abuja on November 5 over various corruption charges, is to curry the favour of the country’s top shots so that they are left off the hook.
Pinnick and four other top officials – Seyi Akinwunmi, Shehu Dikko, Mohammed Sanusi and Ahmed Yusuf ‘Fresh’ – are also being investigated for alleged corruption by both the ICPC and EFCC.