An official of the Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN) has explained that the Emergency Congress of the federation, scheduled to hold in Abuja on May 25, is not meant to witch hunt anybody.
A letter by AFN Secretary General, Rita Mosindi, had directed all Chairmen and Secretary of State Athletics Association to arrive Abuja for the Emergency Congress scheduled for May 25 at the Media Centre of the Moshood Abiola National Stadium.
“The objective of this Extra-Ordinary Congress is to address an important Constitutional matter,” the letter said.
However, some board members of the AFN are said to be running from pillars to post, complaining that the emergency congress in Abuja is meant to witch hunt some of them. They claim that the congress did not meet the required constitutional number of days.
But an official of the body explained, yesterday, that the May 25 emergency congress is not called to witch hunt anyone.
“Anybody claiming that May 25 emergency congress in Abuja is to witch hunt some board members is raising unnecessary alarm,” the official said. “In the first place, the AFN has held its Congress for the year, and anyone we are calling now is emergency,” stressed the official who did not want his name in print.
The official revealed that during the AFN Congress held in January this year, the 1st Vice-president, Tafida Gadzama, raised a bill that the tenure of the President be elongated from 12 years to 16 years. I am sure he did that so that his tenure as the vice president will also be 16 years instead of 12. What we have in the AFN before our congress in January is that the president’s tenure is 12 years, which means the president has tenure of four years of three terms. At World Athletics, the tenure of the president is 12 years.
“Such tenure elongation of 16 years has to get the backing of the federal government, and so, the AFN wrote to the parent body, which is the Sports Ministry. Nigeria is bigger than any sports federation, and we are talking about tenure elongation here. We are all aware that the Sports Minister, Sunday Dare, will be leaving office on May 29, and he wants to use the opportunity of this emergency congress to address some key issues affecting the AFN and athletics in the country.
“Anybody that is saying that the emergency congress on May 25 is to witch-hunt some board members is just playing to the gallery. Maybe, such person is afraid of his or her shadows,” the official concluded last night.