EDO 2020: More Troubles For Ogun Sports Commissioner As Athletes Protest Over Poor Preparation, Unpaid Allowances - THE ENCOUNTER NEWS

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Monday, March 16, 2020

EDO 2020: More Troubles For Ogun Sports Commissioner As Athletes Protest Over Poor Preparation, Unpaid Allowances

The protesters at the entrance of the Commissioner's office on Monday. 
Adenike Sanusi
ABEOKUTA - Barely six days to the commencement of the 20th National Sports Festival billed to hold in Edo state, the Ogun state athletes on Monday protested against the poor preparation and unpaid allowances.

The athletes numbering about 100 stormed the Ogun State Ministry of Youths and Sports at the MKO Abiola stadium, Kuto, Abeokuta. 

The protesters comprising of Volleyball, Basketball, Rugby, and Boxing teams respectively decried the shoddy preparation of the state government and poor welfare package.

A Rugby player who spoke with our reporter, Solomon Oludaresimi expressed dismay over the team's alleged withdrawal from the competition by the Sports Commissioner having qualified for the game in January.

Solomon claimed that, the Commissioner cited inadequate fund as reason the Rugby team were asked not to participate in the forthcoming National Sports Festival in Edo. 

Solomon alleged that, the Commissioner told them whoever decides to go would only do so at his or her expense.

He said, "some of the teams that qualified for sport festival Edo 2020 were being removed from going to the festival, teams like rugby which is one of the most important team that must be there (Male rugby), the most dangerous game, in fact I can say its the most dangerous game in the whole sport was removed from going because they said there is no fund.

"You can go and search, even bella9ja posted it, Tribune, Punch and other media outlet. Why did they remove us, that number one. Secondly, we rugby players have been in camp ourselves for the past one month sponsoring ourselves, with our money, we've sustained injuries with no medicals, we feed ourselves. Now two or a week ago we heard they've removed us.

"We also heard in the news that Ogun state has camped its athletes, fed, sheltered and paid which is a lie. No contract, no staffing, nothing, nothing. We also went to play an elimination game on 4th of January, and we've not gotten our elimination money. 

"All the competition we participated in have not being paid, which include volleyball, Basketball etc. Even the feeding they gave us was 900 Naira, some 1200 per day, some 700 Naira. As a sport man who plays rugby I spend like 3200 Naira on food a day, so what are they now telling me. 

"We have many individual sports, but the problem now is that there is no money, now they are removing us which is the main team because they can't control us because they've removed our money and we no gree. So why? We rugby players most play whether they like it or not. 

"The commissioner was telling us on Friday that if we can sponsor ourselves there, is that possible? When we went for elimination they said we should sponsor ourselves there and represent Ogun state without money.

"We registered ourselves for sixteen days. We are playing for the state, we brought out Jersey, feed ourselves, accommodate ourselves, medicated ourselves, that is very bad."

Addressing the protesters, the state's Commissioner for Youths and Sports, Oluwadare Kehinde assured the athletes of better incentives and welfare package. 

The Commissioner said the state government is concerned about their welfare and ready to meet their demands before the competition begin.

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