Federal High Court Discharges NFF Officials From Alleged Embezzlement Of $8.4 Million FIFA Grant
By Our Correspondent
A federal high court in Abuja Tuesday discharged and acquitted top Nigeria Football Federation, officials from alleged mismanagement of funds meant for football development in the country, Bestchoicesports.com.ng can report.
The presiding judge, Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu dischaged and acquitted Amaju Pinnick, Shehu Dikko, Seyi Akinwunmi and Mohammed Sanusi without arraignment on Tuesday.
According Guardian, the Special Presidential Investigation Panel for the Recovery of Public Property (SPIP) brought the charges against Pinnick, NFF vice presidents Seyi Akinwunmi and Shehu Dikko, general secretary Sanusi Mohammed and committee member Ahmed Yusuf.
The charges range from failure to declare their assets to conflict of interest and alleged embezzlement of $8.4 million paid by world football governing body FIFA to Nigeria for participation in the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
The five defendants were also accused of intentionally and dishonestly moving the sum of about N4 billion without the consent of the NFF.
The SPIP accused Pinnick of working contrary to Section 5 of the Code of Conduct Bureau and Tribunal Act by appointing Financial Derivatives Limited, a company he had vested interest in, as a financial consultant to the NFF, Guardian noted.
Amaju Pinnick, NFF President; Seyi Akinwumi, 1st Vice President; Shehu Dikko, 2nd Vice President and Mohammed Sanusi, Secretary-General all appeared in court Tuesday.
The defense council, for the federal government, which was represented by Mr Sadid Abubakar declined comment when Bestchoicesports.com.ng approached him on why he asked to withdraw the case.
In September, the Arthoney General of the Federation directed that the three cases involving the NFF officials with anti-graft agecies such as ICPC and EFCC be harmonised and charged as one.