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Nigeria risk expulsion over decree

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01 Jul 2010 18:30:04

Nigeria risk expulsion over decree

Nigeria could face the ultimate sanction of being expelled from FIFA if the world governing body decides there has been unacceptable government interference.

FIFA are investigating the Nigerian president's announcement that he has banned the national side from competition for two years as punishment for their poor World Cup campaign, while France's government has already been warned against meddling in the French federation's affairs.

FIFA communications director Nicolas Maingot said: "The worst sanction available is that a national association can be expelled but this is not related to either of the two cases. In terms of Nigeria we have received official information from their government."

Maingot added: "We are looking at both cases. FIFA has a very clear position on political interference but it is premature to speak further about either case."

President Goodluck Jonathan's decree includes the Nigerian Football Federation being dissolved and an interim board appointed.

That appears to fly in the face of FIFA's rules on government interference in the running of national associations.

Under FIFA rules, national associations can be suspended or even expelled if there is such interference.

Special presidential adviser Ima Niboro said: "President Goodluck Jonathan has directed that Nigeria withdraws from international competition for two years to enable the country to put its house in order.

"This directive became necessary following Nigeria's poor performance in the ongoing World Cup."


PA

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