The President of Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), Amaju Pinnick has been removed from his position as First Vice-President of the Confederation of African Football (CAF), and subsequently replaced by South Africa’s Danny Jordaan.
Pinnick who has served in the position since July 2018 was removed by CAF President Ahmad, after Ahmad signed an agreement on behalf of CAF with FIFA President Gianni Infantino on Thursday, confirming the appointment of FIFA Secretary General Fatma Samoura as a General Delegate for Africa, which is in furtherance of recent developments regarding governance structures within the African body.
The NFF, in a statement on Thursday in Abuja by its Communications Department, confirmed Pinnick’s removal by saying his tenure has expired.
“The term of Pinnick as the First Vice-President of CAF along with that of the Second and Third Vice-Presidents expired today (Thursday).
“In line with Article 22(4) of the CAF Statutes, every two years when elections are held at the CAF Congress (as took place today), the CAF Executive Committee on the proposal of the CAF President, elects a First, Second and Third Vice-President respectively from among its members,’’ Ademola Olajire, NFF’s Director of Communications, said in the statement.
Olajire further said: “Significantly, the renewal of Pinnick’s tenure was not proposed by the CAF President because of fundamental differences on focus and direction.’’
He added that Pinnick accepted the CAF President decision as it aligned with his own view, having considered “matters surrounding the administration of African Football which has dovetailed into the Nigerian Football space’’.
The NFF said further that Pinnick would however remain a bonafide member of the CAF Executive Committee to continue with his mandate as such.
It quoted Pinnick as accepting the situation by saying: “It has however been an excellent opportunity to serve as the number two football administrator in the entire African continent.
“My commitment to the game is perpetual, while my support for my colleagues in the Executive Committee remains steadfast.’’
Pinnick’s removal means a reshuffling of the positions of the other vice-presidents, Constant Omari of DR Congo and Moroccan Faouzi Lekjaa.
Omari who is the President of the Congolese Football Federation (FECOFA) will move up from Second Vice-President to First Vice-President.
Lekjaa who heads the Moroccan federation and was Third Vice-President becomes Second Vice-President.
Jordaan will now act as the Third Vice-President.
However, Lekjaa is facing a possible ban by CAF after the Ethiopian Football Federation accused the Moroccan federation president of assaulting a referee.
The incident occurred after the 2018/2019 African Champions League final match between Wydad Casablanca and Tunisia’s Esperance.
After CAF’s Disciplinary Committee failed to reach a verdict earlier this month, the case was sent back to the ruling body.
Meanwhile, Samoura will start her role as FIFA General Delegate to Africa on Aug. 1.
The role is renewable after six months if both CAF and FIFA agree, in the hope of overseeing widespread administration reform in Africa.
NAN reports that CAF has been plagued by a series of scandals in recent times, with Ahmad being detained some weeks ago in France.
FIFA had thereafter announced it was taking over the governance of the confederation, leading to former FIFA President Sepp Blatter saying the move flouted the statutes of football’s world governing body.
He had said the move also represented a “new aspect of colonialism’’.