Benefits Of The Newly Passed NFF 2019 Bill

Only some days ago, the Nigerian Senate passed a new establishment act for the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF). The Act provides a framework for the domestication of the NFF and FIFA statutes. This passed Bill also provides an enabling environment to ensure good governance and management in the operations of the NFF and the sustainable development of Football in Nigeria in line with international standards.

Let’s take a look at the benefits and objectives of the bill:

  1. Recognises Football as a national asset and thus entitled to special privileges, concessions and from time to time to receive grants, subventions and or appropriation from Government in furtherance to its objectives and functions and to facilitate the overall development of football in Nigeria and ensure its sustainable growth.
  2. Recognises that the NFF statutes may be amended from time to time in accordance with the procedures and processes stipulated in the Statutes. The Federation shall deposit its statutes as may be amended from time to time with the National Assembly and the agency of the Federal Government in charge of sports for information and guidance.
  3. Repeals the NFA Act and establishes the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF)
  4. Recognises that the Federation and its members shall be self-governed by the Federation and it’s bodies according to its statues and regulations as well as those that are determined by WAFU, CAF, and FIFA.
  5. All disputes should be resolved as provided in the alternative disputes resolution mechanisms enshrined in the NFF statutes and other football governing bodies FIFA and CAS whose decision is final.
  6. NFF Congress, Executive Committee and other bodies shall be established, composed and operated in line with the NFF statutes as approved FIFA.
  7. Establishes a clear-cut and transparent financial management structure, including requirements for the NFF to publish its annual audited account in a minimum of two national dailies and obligation to keep its accurate Audited accounts for inspection by members, upon approval.
  8. Establishes how the Federal Government may support Football by giving the National broadcaster funds to buy media and broadcast rights from NFF and the leagues at commercially viable terms and broadcast the football events through the networks.
  9. Confers powers on the Federal Government — subject to approval of National Assembly — to issue special regulations, tariffs, and concessions to specific companies, industries, business sectors etc. with the objective of raising funds and or provide the enabling environment for football development (including infrastructure provision and development) as a national asset.
  10. Establishes the mode of appointment for independent auditors for the NFF as provided in the statutes with the exclusive rights/powers to audit funds or grants given to the NFF.
  11. Streamlines and enhances transparency in the transfer of Football Players from Nigeria.
  12. Recognises the NFF as the sole body in charge of football administration, management and regulations in Nigeria in line with its statutes as approved by FIFA.
  13. Recognises the NFF statutes as drafted and approved by the members as its congress and ratified by FIFA as the supreme law for the Governance of the functioning, organization, administration, and operations of the Federation.
  14. Recognises that, the subject of Audit for subsidies, grants and or appropriation received from Government by the Federation, control of legality, public order and safety shall be within the exclusive competence of the Government.
  15. Establishes that the NFF will be constituted, organised and operated as provided in its statutes — mainly as a private sector driven and a self-governing non-profit sports body.
  16. Participation in activities of NFF being voluntary, its members and all participants shall be deemed to have undertaken to waive their rights to take internal disputes of the NFF and football matters to ordinary courts of law and resolve all disputes through the alternative dispute resolution mechanisms provided in the Statutes.
  17. In addition to criteria stipulated in NFF statutes, for a person to be member of the NFF Executive Committee, and to guarantee diligent performance in office, he/she must pledge a bank guarantee as an indemnity (to guarantee diligent performance) to cover the period of the mandate in a manner and form as determined by the Congress.
  18. Establishes clear-cut processes and conditions on how the government will support the NFF financially, if needed, through grants and/or appropriations to only cover a shortfall between the NFF budgets, based on its activities for the year, and its sponsorship revenues. Thus, the benchmark/target is for NFF to quickly work to ensure it reaches self-funding.
  19. Establishes a clear-cut process for the Federal Government to confer benefits, concessions, tax rebates to companies sponsoring football.
  20. Stipulates how the NFF is to organise and operate its general secretariat as provided under its statutes. Also stipulates how personnel and staff will be employed.
  21. Strengthens domestic football with professional leagues as the driver. Stipulates the requirement for full compliance to the club licensing regulations of the federation as a condition to participate in the competitions organised and managed by the league.

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