NFF, Segun Arinze, Others Applaud Integrity Of Nigeria Pitch Awards
Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) and Nollwood star actor Segun Arinze have applauded the organisers of Nigeria Pitch Awards for maintaining the integrity and transparency in the annual awards from the first edition till now.
The Nigerian Pitch Awards, which enters its seventh edition this year, has been a prestigious award platform to rewards footballers, administrators, coaches, clubs, sponsors and journalists for their industry, commitment and passion for the game and for the nation.
Unlike others awards of its kind, the nominees and winners of various categories of the Nigerian Pitch Awards since inception have always been decided solely by a voting congress consists of over 100 Nigerian Sports Editors and senior sports journalists across 36 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Abuja.
P.M. EXPRESS reports that all votes cast were collated and verified by an independent auditing body, SIAO Partners.
Deputy Director, Communications Department of the NFF, Ademola Olajire said that the football body identified with the organisers of Nigeria Pitch Awards because of their consistency in the organisation of the annual awards.
“It has been a long journey. The successful outings of the awards every year is what we have been noticing, and this is an award we are proud to associate with. The integrity of the process is something that continues to delight the NFF. This is an award of excellence for stakeholders in Nigerian football. The organisers have been doing a great job since the first edition,” Olajire said during the unveiling press conference to announce the nominees for the 2020 edition of Nigeria Pitch Awards for performance recorded in the 2018/2019 football season. The press conference was held recently in Lagos.
To the Nollywood star actor, Segun Arinze, the journey to the seventh edition of Nigeria Pitch Awards started just like yesterday. “I can’t believe we are here. Since the first edition, this has been a well audited award devoid of any controversy; an award to reward excellence in Nigerian football,” said Arinze, a guest at the press conference who was announced as the Host of the award ceremony, which will be held at a later date.
One of the senior editors, Ben Muletiwon said he was impressed with faces behind the Nigeria Pitch Awards, adding that there were a lot of awards which had died at birth. “Even without sponsors, the award is waxing stronger. The credibility of Nigeria Pitch Awards deserves our applause,” he said.
Meanwhile, the President of Nigeria Pitch Awards, Shina Phillips showed the appreciation of the organizers to the President and Management of the Nigeria Football Federation and all voters across the country who voted. He said in the last seven years, organizers have worked hard to sustain the core values.
‘Since 2013, we have continued to sustain this incredible platform which rewards footballers, administrators, coaches, clubs, sponsors and journalists for their industry, commitment and passion for the game and for the nation. In seven years, the Nigeria Pitch Awards has become the longest running football awards in Nigerian history. The awards are ranked among the 10 best awards in Nigeria. We are unarguably one of the few audited awards in Africa,” Phillips said.
Former Super Eagles and Manchester United new sensation, Odion Ighalo, Super Eagles andLeicester City F.C midfielder, Wilfred Ndidi, Lille F.C hitman, Victor Osimhen and Super Eagles and Villarreal FC playmaker, Sanuel Chukwueze are among names of Nigerian footballers, officials and football administrators shortlisted for honours at the 7th Award Ceremony of the Nigeria Pitch Awards.
In the King of the Pitch category, Odion Ighalo, Manchester United striker, Victor Osimhen, Super Eagles and Lille FC Striker and Super Eagles and Leicester City F.C midfielder, Wilfred Ndidi will vie clinch the top award. The Queen of the Pitch award will be a tough battle between Onome Ebi of Henan Huishang FC, Chiamaka Nnadozie of Super Falcons and Rivers Angels FC and Barcelona Women Barcelona Women and Super Falcon’s veteran goal poacher, Asisat Oshoala.
The award for the Football Friendly Governor of the Year will be a straight contest between Governor Nyeson Wike of Rivers State, Governor Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom and Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State.