By Emmanuel Afonne
Plateau State Local Government Area (LGA) Football Association (FA) Chairmen have threatened to withdraw Plateau United FC from the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) over crisis rocking the association.
Ajiji Ibrahim, leader of a nine-man group of the LGA FA chairmen told newsmen in Abuja that the plan is to ensure that the state FA Chairman Sunday Longbap resign his position for not honouring a gentleman agreement.
“Plateau United FC will not be allowed to play in the NPFL next season because we all have a stake in the club.
“No league match will take place in the stadium without the FA chairmen because we control football affairs in the state.
“This action will be taken because Longbap refused to honour a gentleman agreement which saw him return to office after we passed a vote of no confidence on him in 2013/2014 season.
“I took charge of the office for six months after that vote of no confidence on Longbap, but he manipulated his way back not minding the gentleman agreement,’’ Ibrahim said.
Ibrahim, who is the FA chairman of Jos East LGA, noted that the call for Longbap’s resignation followed a state FA election conducted on Feb. 19, 2015 which they were disenfranchised.
He said a petition had already been written to the Minister of Youth and Sports Solomon Dalung and the leadership of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF).
The Jos East FA chairman urged the minister and the NFF to wade into the matter to avert football crisis in the state.
According to him, the matter is being revived after the NFF intervention plan failed in 2015.
“Nine of us were at the glasshouse to lodge a complaint to the former NFF General Secretary Musa Ahmadu and he assured us that they will look into it.
“He assured us that the NFF will send a delegation to be led by Ibrahim Gusau, to the state to settle the matter; we waited and we didn’t see anybody,
“Now, NFF should come back and revisit what they left undone for the good of football because we will not allow him to continue in office next season as our state FA chairman.
“We are submissive to NFF but if they fail to take action, we will send Longbap out of office by force and that is where the main crisis will start,” Ibrahim added.
He said that the aim of the group was not to favour any individual or group but for the development of football in the state.
Ibrahim said: “Football has suffered a lot in Plateau state and we don’t want it to continue; we want the truth to prevail.
“For us, that election never held; how can election that major stakeholders were disenfranchised be called an election.
“Besides, the purported election was conducted as early as 7 a.m. on that faithful day just to exclude us.
“We call that election purported because they didn’t follow any guideline that concern football on the Plateau; we had this agreement that we should be patient but it appears they are less concerned.