As the countdown to the fast approaching State FA Election gathers momentum, there is need to critically analyze the performance of the incumbent chairmen inorder to appraise their performance or endorse their reelection.
In 2019, the long awaited State FA Elections took place across the federation. It was dirty in some states and clean in others. But with it, came so many litigations which also had it’s many repacursions.
However, in the midst of these uncertainties, a few FA chairmen still stood out.
Ahead of the fast approaching State FA Election, this writer has decided to pick the best 5 State Football Association Chairmen based on performance, delivery and results.
5th Position: Ondo State FA
Ondo State FA chairman Otunba Dele Ajayi emerged chairman of the state Football Association after an intense battle against former chairman of Sunshine stars football club of Akure, chief Akin Akinbobola.
Ajayi who was a member of the NFF executive commitee between 2010 and 2014, had to bring the full weight of his administrative experience to the table, in order to be reelected as chairman of the Ondo State football Association.
Interms of performance, he has not been found wanting. He has organized two courses for coaches and Referees in the state and has sponsored Ondo State coaches on refresher courses outside the state. He has also upgraded the state FA Secretariate with state of the art facilities and has promised to do even more.
He currently enjoys the full support of his board members.
4th Position: Ogun State FA
Sitting in number 4, is the Alhaji Ganiyu Majekodunmi led Ogun state football Association. This is one state FA that enjoys full sponsorship of all it’s activities from Bet9ja, a company that is owned by a son of the soil.
The state Capital, Abeokuta is always alive with various grassroot competitions, as Alhaji Majek tries to meet up with his pre Election promises.
Presently, there is the annual Ogun state Under 13 and Under 15 male and female leagues which is called the Ogun state FA developmental league. Ogun state and Nasarawa state have done marvelously well with the organisation of their state league.
3rd Position: Nasarawa State FA
Mohammed Alkali is the chairman of Nasarawa State football Association. This former chairman of the Nigeria Nationwide league, has done so well in the area of grassroot football development in his state.
In Northern Nigeria, Nasarawa State FA and Borno State FA have both set a standard for others to meet. From his one room office in Akwanga to a well equipped secretariat in Lafia, Alkali is working really hard to ensure that he leaves a legacy behind.
The yearly Nasarawa State FA Premier league was sponsored by Bet9ja between 2019/2020 and has continued to attract plaudits from fans every year.
At the final of this year’s FA Premier league, Nasarawa State Governor Abdullahi Sule praised Alkali and his board for their investment in grassroot football development.
2nd Position: Borno State FA
In the midst of the many uncertainties created by the insurgency in Borno state, Alhaji Baba Gana Kalli has silenced his critics through his performance as the State FA Chairman.
Kalli, who has just been re-elected into the executive committee of the Nigeria football federation for the third term running, has continued to excite the youths of Borno state with countless grassroot competitions.
The Borno FA has 24 teams in the state league division 1, 48 teams in the division two and the State FA also organize the Shehu Borno Unity Cup every year
There is also the Qatar Cup sponsored by Qatar waters, the Peace and Unity Cup and the Chairman’s cup that is competed for, by clubs within Maiduguri.
1st Position: Anambra State Football Association
In July 2022, the Nigeria football Federation confirmed former Nigerian international, Chikelue Ileonyosi as chairman of Anambra football Association. This declaration came after 2years of uncertainty caused by the failure of the NFF to take a definite stand on previous election results.
Even before his official confirmation, Chikelue had embarked on a youth sensitization programme, aimed at sensitizing the youths of the state on the need to embrace football.
A total of 27 youth teams participated in the 2021/2022 Anambra state football Super Eight, a competition that brought the best eight teams from the local government zonal playoffs to a clash of the titans duel in Awka, the state Capital.
The first Anambra state football stakeholders symposium took place in February this year while the state football league is also gathering momentum.
In just under two years in office, Chikelue has turned the state FA into a model of sort and deserves to get our rating as the best State Football league chairman in Nigeria.