ANPP National Publicity Secretary, Chief Emma Eneukwu
By Onyebuchi Ezigbo
The All Nigeria People's Party (ANPP) has asked the Federal Government to investigate what led to the dismal performance of the country's sports men and women at the just concluded London Olympics.
The party which expressed concern at what it saw as Nigeria’s greatest Olympic nightmare in recent times lamented that the failure of the country's athletes to win any medal at the London games is a clear sign of the collapse of our sports sector.
In a statement issued Tuesday by its National Publicity Secretary, Chief Emma Eneukwu, the party urged on federal government to probe the national disgrace with a view to saving the country's sports industry.
"Our great party hereby calls on the federal government to remove its kid gloves and gear up for a fight to save this sector, starting by probing this national disgrace, which has painted us as a nation of one step forward, two steps backwards," he said.
Eneukwu said sthe earch light should be beamed into an alleged late disbursement of such a huge sum of N1.9billion to our team, as claimed by the National Sports Commission [NSC].
He said that until it is proven otherwise, the party holds the Nigeria Olympic Committee and the Minister accountable for the woeful performance of the delegation.
"Allegations of fraud, favoritism and foul play by the nations’ sports officials before and during the Olympics should be properly probed with a view to punishing culprits.
"Former Nigerian sports champions should be summoned to a roundtable to discuss what went wrong and suggest how best to move our beloved nation forward.
"The ANPP believes that The Nigeria Olympic Committee did not do a thorough job for this nation, " he said.
The ANPP Spokesman said the Minister and officials should stop offering excuses and apologize to Nigerians or resign for the disappointing outing.
He lamented the neglect of sport development by the relevant authorities adding that, today schools are licensed without giving thought to the presence of sports facilities.
According to Eneukwu, government does not have a well articulated and sustainable sports policy that is ambitious and in consonance with international best practices in sports development.
"The Nigerian delegation to the London Olympics failed the whole nation when they came back without even a bronze medal as a prize. It is a fact that the Olympics is about marketing culture through sports and showing the world that one’s country is modern and has an unbridled aspiration to greatness.
"Therefore, in view of our great party’s belief that Nigeria deserves to be the clear and unambiguous leader of Africa, the leader of the black world and a major leader in the world, the All Nigeria Peoples Party [ANPP] is disappointed to witness this abysmal failure.
"We believe that it is a sign of the collapse of the nation’s sports superstructure. Not only is this great nation face-to-face with the heart-rending fact that the government of the day does not inspire the youths, the most heinous is that it has allowed the cancerous corruption in the system to seep into this youth-oriented sector.
"The talented ones jet out of the country to play for other nations because the government has no robust, private sector driven sports competitions, clinics and projects. Our sports professionals are in despair because of lack of upgrade, equipment and adequate funding as at when due," he added.