This is why red tape frustrates. After the Nigerian FA put the name of an ill referee on their provisional list in the hopes that he would recover, Auwalu Barau passed away on December 4th. FIFA then approved the list. And now Nigeria cannot replace him.
Why can’t they replace him? Who knows. This is FIFA. Their ways are as maddening as they are opaque. You’d think that the extenuating circumstance of Mr. Barau’s untimely passing would prompt the governing body to allow the Nigerian FA to submit an alternative.
Barau is perhaps most known for taking a vicious beating at the hands of angry fans after a Nigerian league match three years ago.