By Akeem Busari
The National Association of Nigerian Professional Footballers (NANPF) has disassociated itself from a story credited to Harrison Jalla and purported to be on behalf of the players union, which accused the League Management Company of misappropriating the sum of $25m on resumption as the league organizers.
Reacting quickly, the General Secretary of NANPF, Comrade Austin Popo, in his statement, said Jalla’s unguided blanket accusation of the LMC does not represent the opinion of NANPF, as he is not a member of the players union and neither does he have the rights to speak on behalf of the union.
” We want members of the public and the football authorities to disregard statements credited to Harrison Jalla, whenever, he issues statement that bothers on the players union and its stands on football matters, ” Popo began.
” We also understand that Jalla is projecting a sponsored and selfish agenda aimed at bringing the players union to loggerheads with the football authorities and as well, bring disrepute to Nigerian football. He is playing the scripts of his masters. He is doing the biddings of his masters Total Promotions as they intend to scuttle the plans of the new league sponsors, Next TV, as well as, frustrate the efforts of the LMC” he blasted.
The former NNB of Benin and Nigeria star winger and NANPF’s scribe went on to remark that NANPF remains the only recognized players union and the authentic representatives and mouthpiece of Nigerian footballers, home and diaspora.
” Tijani Babangida is the President of the players union and he was duly elected on 4th December, 2018. No one should mislead the public or drag the players union into issues that would mitigate against the welfare of Nigerian footballers and of course, the betterment of Nigerian football.
“Jalla or whosoever can call themselves as president of NANF, but definitely, not NANPF which is the only recognized players union in Nigeria. NANPF is the only players union in Nigeria, registered with the Registra of Trade Unions and affiliated with the Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC), to operate as a union in Nigeria, he stressed emphatically.