Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) second vice-president Shehu Dikko says lasting peace in Nigerian football is the only means of bringing development and investment to the game in the country.
Dikko, who is also the chairman of the League Management Company (LMC), along with top NFF officials, has faced a slew of investigations by anti-graft agencies EFFC and ICPC over financial misappropriation.
He has equally been on the receiving end of a media backlash from Players’ Union chieftain Harrison Jalla.
Dikko said Nigerians are open to question the actions of the NFF, but advised against negative publicity which scares away potential sponsors of Nigerian football.
Nonetheless, the chairman of the Television, Sponsorship and Marketing Committee of the NFF, noted that the relative peace enjoyed in the football ecosystem in the past six months has brought about positive change, which includes the new Redstrike Investment and Commercial deal the LMC signed on behalf of the NPFL.
“There are always people who are not happy with the progress of Nigerian football, but you can see with the small calmness we are having in our football during the Covid period, and everything was running, you can see now we got a world-class brand like Redstrike to come and invest,” he said in a recent interview on Kennis FM.
“That’s what we keep telling people that; ‘look, we can resolve all our issues internally. Nobody is beyond to be asked questions or to be asked to explain your actions’. It’s normal. It’s part of life. But you do it the right way.
“But when you do media; thinking that you are hurting Amaju Pinnick or Seyi Akinwunmi or Dikko or Dr. (Mohammed) Sanusi or anybody, (you’re) running down the whole brand of Nigerian football. It’s part of the problem that we had when I told you at the beginning of the interview that we went round everywhere in Nigeria trying to get our countrymen to come on board on the NPFL.
“Everybody will tell you ‘yes, I want to be part of it but just wait’. They are waiting to see how these toxic issues will stop.