Friday, December 31, 2010

I'm still NPL chairman - Owumi

Davidson Owumi has declared that the annulment of the election that brought him to office as Nigeria Premier League chairman by the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) is not binding on him as he is ready to continue as league boss.
A statement from Owumi to read: "I remain the Chairman of the Nigeria Premier League based on the elections conducted on the 8th day of May 2010."
He explained that two sub-bodies - the Appeals Committee and the NPL Congress - remain the final stop in decision-making as it concerns his election as Premier League chief. "After the elections, the Appeals Committee (which is the final body to look into matters of the election) sat and approved my Chairmanship.
"The Congress of the NPL has also met and confirmed my Chairmanship on the Premier League board," said Owumi. On the issue of his eligible to contest in the NPL chairmanship poll, Owumi stated that the issue of qualification cannot come after election.
He reiterated that the NPL congress remains the supreme body that can take a decision on the election of the Premier League chairmanship.
The former Enugu Rangers' chief also said the arbitration panel of Professor Akin Ibidapo-Obe was uncalled for since the Appeals Committee had made a decision on the election earlier.
He rubbished the NFF general assembly's ratification of the recommendation by arbitration panel of Professor Ibidapo-Obe.
"Eligibility is a pre-election matter and not post as rules do not get bent mid-way in a contest, therefore, assuming but not conceding that the elections was not properly conducted, it is only the congress of the NPL that can take any decision on the election.
"The arbitration panel award was not binding on me, as I totally objected to the Arbitration panel because it was an aberration and still in our football regulations. Besides, the Appeals Committee of the NPL has already taken a decision on the matter.
"Whatever decisions taken at the Annual General Assembly has not effected whatsoever on me following the suit before Justice Okeke of the Federal High Court in suit no FHC/L/CS/1408/2010.
"Article 68 of the NFF Statutes on Arbitration Tribunal does not provide for, and entertaining such a request as election matters which has a judicial organ, whose decision(s) are final and binding on such election matters. "Therefore, whoever was/is not satisfied with my election as the Chairman of the NPL ought to have taken his/her case to the Court of Arbitration in Sports (CAS)," stated Owumi.

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