The Nigeria Football Federation is set to take the fight against matters relating to match-fixing and match manipulations using every weapon at its disposal.
This assertion was made by Dr. Christian Emeruwa, who is the Security and Integrity Officer of the NFF and also a FIFA official.
Speaking with AOIfootball.com, he revealed plans by the
federation to activate integrity officers at state levels which would assist the NFF in observing and providing information and necessary reports.
According to him, the NFF is already working with security operatives in the country.
“Now, we’re working with our various partners like EFCC, the Nigeria Police Force and the ICPC; as a result of the partnership, we can now request for their assistance in terms of criminal investigations about why they carry out sporting investigations”, Emeruwa said.
He stated further that “a sporting investigation will terminate with a sporting sanction or ban. But the corruption aspect is taken care of by the security agencies. Matters of football corruption can go as far as the courts and if someone is found guilty, he or she will face jail time”.
Emeruwa added that before Nigeria became part of the FIFA structure to monitor what happens as regards manipulation, people had been engaging in one form or the other to manipulate games.
“The fact is that match-fixing is happening. We’ve had cases where teams scored 79 goals. These are signs that it is real in Nigeria.”
He however affirmed the readiness of the Nigeria Football Federation in combating match manipulations.
“The NFF has told the whole world that we’re now in the business of fighting match manipulation within the territory of Nigeria.”
“NFF today has approved a zero-tolerance on match manipulation within the territory of Nigeria. No one has reasons to be engaged. For those who are in this business, we’re telling them we will show them the way out of football”, Emeruwa concluded.