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AFN seeks peace with sports ministry

Sports Ministry reverses Athletics Federation dissolution

The Ministry of Youth and Sports Development has reversed its earlier decision to dissolve the board of the Athletics Federation of Nigeria along with 30 other sports federations.

This was contained in a statement signed by the Acting Director, Federations and Elite Athletes Department in the sports ministry, Dr. Simon Ebhojiaye, on Sunday.

According to Ebhojiaye, the decision was taken to allow elections take place in the AFN as directed by World Athletics.

“In consonance with the resolution reached by the Confederation of African Athletics/World Athletics intervention team on the Athletics Federation of Nigeria, the Caretaker Committee announced that the Athletics Federation of Nigerian is rested and will not be inaugurated.

“Elections into the board of the federation will follow the road map adopted at the intervention meeting in Abuja last month upon its adoption by World Athletics,” the sports ministry’s statement read.

Consequently, the ministry set up care-taker committees to oversee the affairs of the 31 dissolved federations with most of the former presidents assigned the new roles of chairmen.

In a sharp reaction, most members of the board of the federations immediately kicked against the decision of the ministry as they insisted that having been inaugurated on June 21, 2017, they still have about two months to serve.

Meanwhile, the ministry has removed the names of the President of the Nigeria Olympics Committee Habu Gumel and secretary-general of the NOC Olabanji Oladapo from the list of caretaker committee members for the dissolved boards of the National Sports Federations.

The sports ministry, following the dissolution of boards of the federations Friday appointed three-member caretaker committees to oversee the affairs of the federations, prior to the election of new boards in a yet to be disclosed date.

The ministry appointed Gumel into the Nigeria Volleyball Federation committee, while Oladapo was named as a member of the Nigeria Table Tennis Federation committee.

But in a statement signed by Simon Ebhojaiye, Director of Federations, Elite Athletes and Development, on Sunday, the names of Gumel and Oladapo were removed, with Prof Ebenezer Morakinyo and Enitan Oshodi taking their places.

“The general public is invited to note that Habu Gumel has been substituted with Prof. Ebenezer Morakinyo in the Volleyball Federation Caretaker Committee, while Banji Oladapo has been substituted with Oshodi Enitan in the Table Tennis Federation,” the statement read in part.

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