Nigerian Athletes Lament Over Non-Inclusion Of 50,000 Palliative From The Ministry

By Ibrahim Taiwo, The Nigerian Voice Sports
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Some top Nigerian athletes have expressed their disappointment over their exclusion in the COVID-19 palliative by the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development.

The Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Mr Sunday Dare, had directed the payment of N50,000 into the accounts of Nigerian athletes to provide relief in the face of the coronavirus pandemic .

According to reports, over 200 athletes are expected to benefit from the palliative. But several top athletes have kicked against the decision of the Sports ministry to give to some athletes.

The Athletes however questioned the rationale behind the distribution of the relief funds.

Top female wrestler, Odunayo Adekuoroye, revealed that she was yet to receive her share of the money.

In her words “I did not get any money. I know the ministry wanted to reach out to athletes but, I never got any alert. I don't know maybe there are criteria for disbursing the funds.”

Enoch Adegoke, a sprinter, also said he doubts if his name is on the list of the beneficiaries. “I have not received any money yet from the government but I hope to that's if my name was included in the list”

Meanwhile, the General Secretary of the
Nigeria Boxing Federation, Sunny Obot, confirmed that two boxers Afeez Osoba and Bolanle Sogbamu have been paid .

“The ministry told us to send two names of our top athletes and we considered our best.”

Osoba said the money has been helpful in keeping fit during the lockdown.

He said , ” I have received my N50, 000 palliative from the ministry. The money has gone a long way in helping me with my training and preparation for the 2020 Olympics.”

Meanwhile, factional President of the Athletics Federation of Nigeria, Olamide George, pleaded with athletes yet to receive their share of the relief fund to be patient, saying every athlete would benefit from the N11m relief fund.

“I have told several people who have been calling me that it is the prerogative of the ministry, and the federation (AFN) is not against it.” George said.