Election Crisis Rocks Nigeria Football Supporters Club


An aggrieved member of the Nigerian Football Supporters Club, Abayomi Osifala, has dragged the club before a federal high court in Lagos, southwest Nigeria, over the expiration of the tenure of the current officers of the club since 31 July, 2012.

Joined as co-defendants in the suit are the president general, Nigeria Football Supporters Club, the National Chairman, the Chairman, Electoral Committee and the Secretary General of the club, Reverend Samuel Ikpea.

In an affidavit  sworn to by Abayomi Osifala and filed before the court by Toyin Pinheiro (SAN), the deponent alleged that as a financial member of the club, he is interested in contesting for the position of Secretary General of the club, as the constitution of the Nigerian Football Supporters Club stipulates that an elected officer of the club can hold office for two consecutive terms of four years each.

Mr. Osifala averred further that Reverend Samuel Ikpea was first appointed as the acting secretary General in the year 2002, and in the year 2004, reverend Ikpea contested election for the position of the secretary general and was elected and in the election result the position of the Secretary General was slated to be National Secretary General and there was no position as National Secretary General in the constitution of the club. However, the position of the Secretary General is used interchangeably with the acronym National Secretary and the two offices are one and the same.

Reverend Ikpea was alleged to have written many letters and articles on behalf of the club describing himself at times as Secretary General and at other times as the National Secretary.

However, Mr. Osifala alleged that he complained about the breach by Reverend Ikpea not calling an annual general meeting, all in a bid for him to remain in office but in reply to his complaint, Reverend Ikpea stated that he was elected as the National Secretary of the club by election in 2004 and in 2008, the office of the National Secretary was scrapped leaving the office of the Secretary General for which he contested the election to the office of the Secretary General.

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Mr. Osifala contended that the tenure of executive committee of the club has expired since 31 July, 2012 and the date for the election which is to take place at the quadrennial delegates conference of the club which ought to be held 90 days before the expiration of the tenure of the executive committee of the club has not been fixed by Reverend Ikpea.

Meanwhile, a bailiff of the Federal High Court, Mr. Tajudeen Kayode Lawal assigned to serve the court process on the defendants at 10, Mabo Street, Surulere, Lagos Club House of the Nigerian Football Supporters Club was thoroughly beaten by people suspected to be the supporters or aides of the defendants.

In an affidavit sworn to by Mr. Tajudeen Lawal and filed before the court, he averred that the matter was reported at Surulere Police Station at Hogan Bassey Street, where he made a statement before going to hospital for treatment.

Justice M. Molukwu has adjourned till 26 November for the hearing of the case while the treatment meted out to the court bailiff, Tajudeen Lawal, has been brought to the notice of the authorities of the Federal High Court for necessary action. The complaint lodged at the Surulere Police Station against the defendants by the court bailiff is still pending.

Mr. Osifala is urging the court to restrain all the officers of the club from parading themselves as officers of the club since their tenure has expired on the 31 July, 2012.

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