The President of Badminton Federation of Nigeria, Mr Francis Orbih has decried the continued refusal of the Egyptian embassy to issue the 20-member delegation visas to the All Africa Senior Championships in Egypt in Cairo which began today.
In a chat with Orbih, he said the embassy would only issue visas to 15 of them just as the Nigeria Football Federation General- Secretary, Dr Mohammed Sanusi is pulling strings to get all of them visas.
“As we speak, they have refused to grant us our visa. I just spoke with Dr Sanusi of NFF who has good rapport with the embassy and has stepped in to get us the visas.
“At some point, they said out of 20-member delegation, they will only issue visas to 15 of them. We have 12 players, 3 coaches and that is 15 already.
“That means I will not be going, my vice president will not be given, the team manager will not be visa also and two umpires who were officially invited by the Badminton Confederation Africa to come umpire exam will not also.
“I am the president of BFN, I’m the 2nd vice president of Nigeria Olympic Committee, and also board member of Badminton Confederation of Africa, so what other criteria do they want to determine how to issue me visa.
“So they are just being difficult and they increased it to 17. But we have it on authority that nothing is being done about our application while we are thinking the embassy is working on our application,” he said.
Nigeria is currently ranked number one team on the continent while Egypt is its closest rival and as at the time of going to press, the team is yet to be issued visas.
The Championships is also a qualifying series African Badminton Players to secure their power rankings ahead of the 2020 Olympic Games will end on the 16th of February, 2020.
The full team consist Eneojo Joseph Abah (Captain), Anuoluwapo Opeyori Juwon, Godwin Richard Olofua , Aliyu Alhaji Shehu, Isaac Murphee Minaphee , Babatunde Bankole Timilehin , Dorcas Ajoke Adesokan (Asst.Captain), Grace Gabriel, Deborah Ukeh-Divine, Sofiyat Arinola Obanishola, Ramatu Yakubu and Ruth Chinenye Ibere. The coaches are:- Senior Team Head Coach, Ben Orakpo, Assistant Coaches George H.Shitta and Susan Ideh-Agboolah.
The delegation is led by the President which includes the Vice President, Chairman Technical committee, the team Manager, Technical Director, Secretary General and two umpires invited by the BCA.