The Edo State government has shut down the Main Organising Committee (MOC) office in the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium, Benin City following the failure of the federal government to fund the 20th National Sports Festival.
According to the Deputy Governor and Chairman, Local Organising Committee (LOC) of the Festival. Rt Hon Philip Shuaibu, the MOC which has the officials of the Federal Ministry of Youths and Sports Development as members will not be allowed to perform their duties any longer.
In a press conference held today, Shuaibu said the state government could no longer fund the Festival .
“We may be shutting down the National Sports Festival not because Edo State is not ready not because the facilities is not here. You can see we have the state of the art facilities which are in good in shape.
“We had no doubt to doubt the Federal Government’s plan to fund the 20th national sports festival after so many postponement which was orchestrated by the COVID-19 pandemic and the instance of the government .
“As a I speak to you, it took the grace of God for the traders not to shut down. Other vendors are threatening to shut down and hence the LOC have no choice after our midnight meeting to shut down the 20th National Sports Festival if we don’t full commitment from the federal government by noon tomorrow,” he stated.
Shuaibu further gave the federal government till tomorrow noon to fully commit to the Festival or risk complete shutdown of the festival.
“We already it had in our plans to shut down the MOC by 12pm today and other venues will be shut down by tomorrow noon if we don’t full commitment. But by 12 noon today, the MOC office will be shut down, we will allow the games to continue and by tomorrow, if we don’t get full commitment, we will shut down.
“This is not a threat as we are ready to collaborate with the federal government in all its policies but it is just that our vendors are threatening to shut down and the state has no resources to commit to the extent we have already committed,” he concluded.