Retired Nigeria Referee Joseph Okeke Criticizes NRA Over Fitness Test, Calls For State Elections
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By Vitus Michael
Retired Nigeria Professional Football League, NPFL referee, match commissioner and businessman, Joseph Okeke has lampooned Tade Azeez-led Nigerian Referees Association, NRA for their insensitivity in allowing Nigeria Football Federation, NFF to conduct fitness test for referees despite indemnities of the whistle professionals from last season not being cleared .
Mr Okeke made the statement following the announcement by NFF to conduct fitness test for the nation’s referees
“I can’t imagine that Tade Azeez-led board would sit back and allow fitness test to be conducted by Nigeria football federation referee department despite the indemnities of referees, match commissioners from last season not being paid by League Management Company, LMC now interim management Committee, IMC.
The erudite referee further called for a change in leadership structure of the NRA, saying the tenure of the current board at both the state and national levels, have expired
“I am not disappointed that Tade Azeez would have allowed this to happen because of his selfish interest by perpetrating himself in office knowing that his tenure has expired and has refused to call for election at both state and national levels
“It is time for referees to wake up and take back their association, if NRA failed to set machinery in motion for electoral committee to be set up in the next few days and elections to be conducted at both state and national levels,” he concluded
Nigeria referees and match commissioners have not been paid their accumulated indemnities from last season while a fitness test is being conducted for a new season where a referee is expected to pay a minimum of fifteen thousand naira not to to talk of the cost of travelling and other logistics.