NFF, Ondo FA crisis deepens as calls for Dele Ajayi’s removal persist
Nigerian Concord Newspaper
It is no longer news that the Ondo State Football Association is in a deep fight with the leadership of the Nigeria Football Federation, NFF
Reason for the crisis is connected to the deep involvement of the Chairman of the Ondo State Football Association, Otunba Dele Ajayi in some petitions written to some security agencies against the Amaju Pinnic- executives of the NFF.
Owing to Otunba Dele Ajayi’s involvement in the crisis and financial scandal rocking the NFF, the Amaju Pinnic- led executives have refused to recognized the Ondo State Football Association for as long as he , Otunba Dele Ajayi, remains the chairman.
This as a matter of fact was confirmed in the cancellation of the elections of the Ondo State Football Association by the NFF under Mr. Amaju Pinnic.
According to findings by this newspaper, the Ondo State Football Association has been facing a serious setback due to leadership crisis which has led to the grounding of all local activities.
Owing to the crisis between Otunba Dele Ajayi and the Amaju Pinnic- led executives, the NFF has since been denying the Ondo State Football Association some of its rights and privileges.
For deeping his neck into the leadership crisis and financial scandal rocking the NFF, the mother body has been frustrating all the efforts being made by the Ondo State Football Association. “The NFF wants Otunba Dele Ajayi removed as our chairman because it seems they cannot work with him again” a reliable source within the Ondo State Football Association told our investigators.
The source continued that it was because Otunba Dele Ajayi involved in the Ondo State FA elections and emerged as chairman that made the NFF to refuse to accept the results of the elections which some saw as free and fair.
The source said that all efforts to make Otunba Ajayi who has spent about 15 years as vice chairman and chairman of the Ondo State Football Association respectively reconcile with the NFF proved abortive as he was not ready to succumb to the mother body.
Apart from his face off with the NFF’s leadership, Otunba Dele Ajayi is reported to be having a running battle with his estranged erstwhile deputy, Otunba Dele Ologbese, who is also interested in the Ondo State Football Association chairmanship seat
Ologbese, an aspirant in the Ondo State Football Association chairmanship race, according to findings had taken Ajayi to court on several occasions.
It was reported that Ologbese took Ajayi to court over an allegation by the Ondo FA chairman that he took bribe from members of the Ondo State Supporters Club when they were seeking for Visas to travel to Canada on a Tournament.
It was also reported that the Visa applications were denied by the Canadian High Commission in Nigeria over a revelation that Otunba Dele Ajayi added his female relative who wasn’t a member of the Supporters Club to the applications.
After the visa applications were refused by the High Commission, the Ondo FA chairman made several allegations against Ologbese, and that resulted to a court case instituted against him.
Another allegation against Ajayi from Ologbese who denied that he had never involved in any fraudulent act as a football administrator in Ondo state when this newspaper spoke with him is that the Ondo FA chairman has always been running the association as an extension of his business. Ajayi was accused by Ologbese as running the association from the United States where he lives most of his life.
Although, Otunba Dele Ajayi agreed in a chat with this newspaper that the NFF is fighting him because he didn’t agree to join them in their shady deals, he noted that he is not fighting the Amaju Pinnic-led executives.
For Ologbese, the Ondo State Football Association chairman said to this newspaper that all they are doing is to stop him from emerging again as chairman of the FA.
He said he was not moved by the cancellation of the last elections by the NFF, adding that he would allow the newly constitutes electoral committee have its way if that would bring peace back to the Ondo State Football Association.
Meanwhile, the messy involvement of Otunba Ajayi in the leadership crisis and financial scandal in the NFF has given the Ondo State Football Association out as enemies of the Amaju Pinnic-led executives, NFF as well as all football stakeholders in Nigeria.
A source told this newspaper that Ajayi’s involvement in the ongoing corruption trial of Amaju Pinnic and others has deprived the Ondo FA from attending Congresses as well as a participation in the zenith Bank under 13 and under 15 football competitions.
As a result of Ajayi’s running battle with the NFF, the Ondo State Football Association was deprived the right to share from the COVID-19 palliatives from both NFF and FIFA.