Cross River Clears Air On Why It Failed To Host NSF

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Otuekong Orok Duke, Cross River State Sports Commission Chairman

By; VITALIS UGOH, Calabar

The Chairman, Cross River State Sports Commission, Otuekong Orok Otu Duke, has blamed contractors handling different projects in preparation for the National Sports Festival for being responsible for the failure to host the games in the state.

However, he said , “the state still has another opportunity to bid for the next hosting. What the Federal Government did was on intervention basis as a major stakeholder in the festival”.

Orok made this disclosure in Calabar on Friday while explaining why the state could not hold it as planned.

He said ” on our part, we are bent on providing facilities for the games”.

The decision was taken in order to save the sports calendar especially as it concerns the National Sports Festival (NSF).

According to him, “the fact remains that some of the facilities were not ready. It was a problem caused by the contractors who had collected up to 70 per cent of their contract sum”.

Despite this, he said, “the contractors have gone to court to ask for variation which was not part of the contract agreement especially when they had abandoned the jobs”.

They had used all sources of underground tactics to collect monies from the state government. The commission had also gone to court to challenge their claims, he added.

Orok said “we shall resist them from moving our equipment out of the stadium, adding that “there are so many forces trying to undermine what the commission is trying to do with little funds availed to it”.

The contractors, he said, abandoned the swimming pool, hostels as well as the Indoor Sports Complex after collecting huge sums of money and are nowhere to be found.

In answer to another question, he said, “in bidding, it all depends on the governor to accept or not to accept”.

He announced that MTN has accepted to provide facilities for a befitting clinic in the stadium as there was none before now.

Meanwhile, the Commission aside the Table Tennis Complex, is building a restaurant that will be 24 hours functional and is expected to be commissioned on or before the World Cup slated for June 2018.

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