Suspended Gusau-led AFN declares autonomy from sports ministry
…Suspends six board members
The Athletics Federation of Nigeria has declared autonomy from the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development over alleged interference.
The federation also sacked six of its board members, appointed a new Secretary-General and relocated its headquarters.
This was contained in a copy of the resolution of an extra-ordinary congress of the AFN held at the Golden Tulip Hotel and Resort, Agulu, Anambra State on Wednesday.
There have been lingering crisis in the athletics federation, leading to the board members splitting into factions.
The crisis took a new dimension when the sports minister, Sunday Dare, ordered the removal of Sunday Adeleye as the Technical Director of the AFN over the country’s poor outing at the 2019 World Athletics Championships in Doha.
Shortly after ordering Adeleye’s removal, a faction of the AFN board summoned a parallel board meeting and ‘suspended’ Ibrahim Gusau as the federation’s president.
But resolution of the congress held in Awka read in part, “At the end of the deliberations, the Congress noted the resignation of Solomon Ogba from the Board of the AFN, but rejected the said resignation.
“The congress declared its autonomy/independence from the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development in line with international best practices and in conformity with the statutes of the World Athletics and the Confederation of African Athletics.
“The congress mandated the board of the AFN to immediately proceed with the process of registering the Federation with the relevant agencies;
“The congress approved the appointment of Mr Siminialayi Young Pepple, as the General Secretary for the Federation;
“The congress approved the appointment of Irikefe Kingsley Ogbogbo as the legal adviser of the federation; and approved the appointment of an External Auditor;
“The congress approved the sponsorship deal with giant sports apparel manufacturers, Puma (2019-2022) as negotiated and executed by the president and secretary general on behalf of the federation;
“The congress approved the relocation of the Federation’s Headquarters from the MKO Abiola National Stadium, Abuja to a befitting office in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory;
“The congress approved that the following erring members of the board of the federation be suspended for two calendar years with effect from December 4, 2019 for anti-federation activities, gross violation of the provisions of the Federation’s constitution: Olamide George, Brown Ebewele, Gabriel Okon, Rosa Collins, Sani Mohammed, and Mr Fidelis Gadzama.
“The congress considered the series of letters from the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development on the removal of Mr Sunday Omotayo Adeleye as the elected Athletes’ Representative on the Board of the Federation and the Technical Director of the Federation, and rejected them in their entirety as they contravene the provisions of the Constitution of the AFN, CAA and the WA.”