ABEOKUTA – The 2018 winners of Ogun State Aiteo Cup, Allstars Football Club of Abeokuta has expressed its disappointment for being excluded from the 2019 edition of Aiteo Cup in the state by the Ogun State football association.
It was observed that, the 2019 fixtures of the Aiteo cup released by the state FA on at the weekend, Remo Stars Feeders team was drawn bye as the defending champions instead of Allstars FC.
But Allstars FC in a protest addressed to NFF President, Amaju Pinnick frowned at the obvious exclusion of the team from participating in the Aiteo Cup by the Ogun FA.
According to the letter signed by the club’s Secretary, Mr. Babalola Semiu Adesina, title holders of the competition will automatically participate in second round of new season, expressing displeasure over the replacement of the team for Remo Stars Feeders team of Sagamu.
Babalola accused the State FA of compromising the statutory regulations of Aiteo Cup wherein the state winner comes into the competition at the second round stage.
The scribe explained that, the club predicament began in 2018 when letter recognizing Allstars FC as the state champion was not done, until the Club’s President, Alhaji Lawal Adeoye Waheed granted an interview in a national newspaper exposing the sabotage by the Ogun FA before being given letter of recognition with reference number OGSFA/ORG/V11/18/020.
He alleged that, the state FA is yet to officially inform the club of the commencement of the 2019 edition of the competition as the reigning champions.
Allstars FC therefore, appealed the NFF leadership and the Ogun State governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun to compel Ogun State FA under the chairmanship of Ganiyu Majekodunmi to temporary ban the start of 2019 Aiteo Cup competition in the state following the alleged bias position of the FA.
The club equally enjoined NFF to compel Ogun State Football Association to remit to the purse of Allstars football club all entitlements required for winning the 2018 Aiteo cup in the state including all expenses incurred.
“Having said this, the 2019 Challenge Cup began the release of letters to Proprietors, Managers and Secretaries of various clubs within the state except the ‘Defending Champion’. As we write this letter today, the Allstars football club who is the AITEO Cup holder is yet to receive a formal letter from the Ogun State Football Association acquainting the 2018 FA Cup defending champion of the beginning of the 2019 Aiteo cup competition.
“As if this was not enough, the Ogun State Football Association released the 2019 Aiteo cup football competition fixtures and indicated at the bottom of the fixtures impersonating the Remo Stars (feeders) as the defending champion of the Ogun State Aiteo Cup.
“Infer from the above, we call on the NFF who is the highest governing body of all football activities in Nigeria, the Ogun State Ministry of Youth and sports and the state governor to compel the Ogun State FA to release a rejoinder, refuting the action of impersonation that had gone viral on the media stating Remo stars (feeders) as the defending champions of the Aiteo cup in Ogun State.
“Request the Ogun State Football Association to explain why Allstars football club was placed to start the 2018 National Aiteo cup competition in the first round while Remo stars (runners up) was placed in the second position.
“Compel the State Football Association not to request for the 2018 Aiteo cup from Allstars football club since the club was not informed about the beginning of the current year football competition.”
In his reaction, the media officer of the Ogun State Football Association, Sanusi Lateef said, “As the Media Officer of Ogun FA I can tell you that none of the clubsides that registered for the FA Cup was written.
“They heard about the competition in the news and on social media and did the needful by contacting the Ogun FA Secretariat and registering.
“It should be noted that the FA cup is an open competition that any club no matter their status, can register for, so far they can meet up with all registration requirements.
“Thus, it’s not part of Ogun FA’s tradition to officially write clubs to participate. It is also noteworthy to say that no clubside including All Stars was written last season by the Ogun FA, before they took part in the FA Cup.”