The Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare has revealed that it will cost the ministry N81m to cut the grass and weed that have taken over the MKO Abiola National Stadium, Abuja The SportsBay reports.
He stated this recently while speaking during the during the one-day seminar organised by the Sports Writers Association of Nigeria (SWAN) FCT chapter recently.
According to him, the ministry approached the Abuja Environmental Protection Board (AEPB) for assessment in the stadium which was built in 2003 with N53 billion on a 29 hectares (72 acres) of land.
The stadium is divided into Package A which houses the Main Bowl and Package B which houses other facilities like basketball courts, NFF office, volleyball courts, tennis courts, squash courts
“We approached AEPB to come to see what can be done to clear the grass and weed in the stadium and they told us it will cost us N81m.
“If we tell Nigerians we used N81m which is not even available, there will be an outcry. The funds are not really there for us and that is why we are partnering with private investors to bring back the key components of our infrastructures,” he said according to Daily Trust.
He further decried the proper funding for sports in the country as contained in the 2021 budget while calling for more funding.
“Without funding, there is no sport. You can’t sow yam and expect to reap cocoyam.
“Using intervention funds for Olympics, All Africa Games is not sport development. State governments take sports as ‘play play’ and when they appoint sports commissioners, its like they are doing those people a favour.
“A commissioner will demand for example N20m, the state governor will release N2m and the remaining money will go elsewhere. That has to stop,” he asserted.