Nigeria Football Federation President, Amaju Pinnick and Secretary-General, Mohammed Sanusi, has been asked to wait till February twentieth to hear the verdict in the alleged misappropriation of 9.5 million dollars FIFA grant.
The court’s position comes after the Office of the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) decided to withdraw from participating in the case thereby giving the EFCC free rein to pursue both men.
The NFF chieftains had thought themselves free of the corruption charges when Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu dismissed a version of the charges as included in a case brought against the duo by the now-defunct Special Presidential Investigatory Panel (SPIP) formerly led by the disgraced Okoi Obono Obla last November.
Naija News recalls that the EFCC had made a similar demand to the court last October seeking to amend its charges against three NFF staffers accused of fraudulently diverting several million dollars worth of FIFA development funds so as to include Pinnick and Sanusi as co-accused persons.
The antigraft agency had earlier named both men as witnesses to the case but sought a change in their designation to reflect that they are now considered persons of interest.
The request was, however, put on hold after a representative of the AGF Abubakar Musa informed the court that it would take control of all cases against the NFF in a bid to ascertain the validity of the charges, eliminate duplicity of charges and consolidate all the cases against the federation into one single case to be tried in a single court.
That position was however reversed on Monday when Musa informed the court of the AGF’s intention to withdraw from the case. This, in turn, gave leave for the EFCC to resurrect their request to join Pinnick and Sanusi as co-accused to the corruption case.
Presiding Justice Peter Affen despite the protestations of NFF counsel Festus Ukpe, agreed that the EFCC which was represented in court by Barrister Steve Odiase had the prerogative as prosecutors to amend their charges to include new accused persons.
Justice Affen. however, adjourned the case until 20 February when a ruling will be made on the EFCC’s motion to name Pinnick and Sanusi as co-accused alongside the three NFF accounts staffers.