The first and second vice presidents of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), Seyi Akinwunmi and Shehu Dikko, as well as seven other top officials, have been summoned by the Special Presidential Investigation Panel (SPIP), as part of its efforts to recover public property and diverted funds.
In a letter from the Presidency addressed to NFF President, with reference CR:3000/SPIP/ABJ/T5/VOL.2, dated October 24, 2018, made available to The Guardian, the seven NFF officials were invited to make clarification on certain issues being investigated by the panel, including recovery of public property and diversion of public funds.
The letter signed by the Director of Operations, Tahir Usman, on behalf of the chairman of the panel, also has Alhaji Ahmed Yusuf (aka Fresh), Barrister Christopher Green, Otumba Sunday Dele Ajayi, Alizor Chuks and Mohammed Cheku on the list of those invited.
“Following the constitution of the Special Presidential Investigation Panel (SPIP) for the Recovery of Public Property in line with the Recovery of Public Property (Special Provision) Act. 2004, the panel is investigating an alleged case or conspiracy and Diversion of Public Funds in which the names of the above officers featured and the need to obtain certain clarification from your organisation becomes necessary.
“In view of the above, you are to release the officers for an interview with the chairman of the Panel on October 30, 2018, by 11.00am prompt at SPIP office, Plot 2802, Idris Kutigi Street, adjacent to AIT, Guzupe, Asokoro extension, Abuja.”
No detail were given about the ‘public properties and diverted funds’ being investigated by SPIP, but according to The Guardian, the invitation of Akinwunmi, Dikko and other top NFF officials may not be unconnected with the alleged diversion of $10.8 million FIFA grant, in which three officials of the NFF are on trial with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
The three officials, Christopher Andekin (NFF Director of Administration and Finance), Fadanari Mamza (Head, Finance and Account Department) and Reagan Zaka (Cashier) were arraigned by EFCC at the Federal High Court at Maitama, Abuja, recently for allegedly tampering with $9.5 million and $1.3 million received from FIFA. They are facing charges ranging from criminal conspiracy, breach of trust and misappropriation.