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Owumi vows to restructure NPL


NEWLY elected Chairman of the Nigeria Premier League (NPL), Davidson Owumi, says he will restructure the local league to make it more effective.

The Enugu Rangers former chairman defeated Bayelsa United’ boss, Victor Rumson Baribote, by 13 votes to four to succeed Oyuki Obaseki, who was not eligible to for re-election. According to, Owumi, who is still on Enugu Rangers’ board, is delighted by his victory and also confident that the new board will tackle the problems facing the Premier League.

“There is so much work to do and I am sure that we are capable of getting through the problems to properly reposition the Premier League in the country,” the once league top scorer in his playing days said.

“There will be a turn around, God helping us, there will be a new change for the Premier League. The last board did very well and we are going to improve the league in all ramifications.”

Among the problems Owumi will have to tackle in his first four years in office are poor local interest in the league, poor playing pitches, hooliganism, poor working conditions for players as well as over-dependence on the title sponsors of the championship.

President of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), Sani Lulu, has since congratulated Owumi on his election, urging him to work hard to improve the domestic league. Lulu will inaugurate the new seven-man NPL board this week in Abuja.

Meanwhile, football lovers in Enugu burst into wild celebrations as one of their own, Owumi, who was a former chief executive officer of Rangers and Special Adviser on Rangers to former governor of Enugu State, was elected NPL chairman in Abuja at the weekend.

People were seen in groups discussing the probable outcome of the election at the Nnamdi Azikiwe Stadium, Enugu, early last weekend but when words filtered in that Owumi had been elected to the exalted position, wild celebrations sparked off.

Chairman of Enugu Football Association, Chidi Offo Okenwa, stated: “To God be all the Glory. I am very happy with the outcome of the elections, as Owumi is a square peg in a square hole. Nigerian club football will never be the same again. He is very capable.”

According to the owner of amateur club El-Nahag FC of Enugu, Nnamani Friday, “this is very good for Nigeria. For once, absolute reasoning has taken place. Owumi remains the right panacea to all the troubles of Nigerian football. He will not disappoint.”

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