Nigeria’s hope of participating in the forthcoming World Athletics Relays may have hit the rocks following the leadership crisis rocking the Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN).
The World Athletics (WA) on Wednesday released names of countries that will b participating at the events with Nigeria conspicuously missing on the list after it failed to send her entries for the event which is is billed to hold in Silesia, Poland between May 1 and 2, 2021 with 153 teams made up of 1036 athletes.
Speaking with the embattled president of the Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN), Engr Ibrahim Shehu Gusau, he blamed the Federal Ministry Youth and Sports Development for Team Nigeria absence.
“The Sports Ministry should be blamed for Team Nigeria’s absence from the list of countries to participate for the event because we wanted to hold a National Trials in March but the Ministry sent letters to states and stakeholders not to honour the invitation leaving us not having athletes to send for entries ahead of the event.
“It so sad that we will not be going for the World Athletics Relays. Some of our athletes have missed a golden opportunity to represent the country and also qualify for the upcoming Olympic Games,” he said.
It will be noted that the Ibrahim Gusau-led AFN had fixed March 29 and 30 for the national trials at the Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium, Port Harcourt which was to serve as qualifiers for the WA Relays which were however postponed,
It was also qualifiers for the World Athletics U-20 Championships (Nairobi), 22nd CAA African Senior Athletics Championships (Algiers) and CAA Region II Championships, Kaduna. The World Relays which is also a qualifying event for Tokyo Olympic Games.