By; JACOB ONJEWU DICKSON
The executive Governor of Rivers State, Barrister Nyesom Wike has urged sports writers to brave up and end corruption in the sports sector in the country.
He expressed this while declaring open the Sports Writers Association of Nigeria (SWAN), Triennial Delegates Conference, Port Harcourt 2019, at the Rivers State House of Assembly Complex on Monday October 7, 2019.
Wike who was the Special Guest of Honour, was represented by the Secretary to the Rivers State Government (SSG), Dr. Tammy Danagogo who was also former Minister of Youth and Sports, lamented that such corruption was preventing sports from making progress in the country.
“There is lot of corruption in sports and it is controlled by cabals and some sports writers belong to such cabal.
“When I was Minister, Super Eagles failed to perform because their entitlement were not given to them. I know I signed about N1.4bn, besides what they got from FIFA, GLO and other endorsements. They said they will pay them but they didn’t. The players complained that it happened in 2010 and after the World Cup when they complained, they were told they won’t play again.
” As such, the players stopped training for three days and we were thinking we would surpass Africa’s record at the World Cup but that made it impossible. Sports writers have to correct that,” he said.
Speaking further, he said tgat another problem hindering sports development is that there us no structured preparation of finances.
“There is no structure preparation of funds in sports. What we do is fire brigade approach. I would thank Ngozi Okonjo Iweala because we were working on something like that, but change of government stopped it. What happens is big money comes close to competitions and at the NFF they call it bumper harvest,” he said.
Speaking further, he said that the onus lies on the sports writers to make an impression that will salvage the sector.
“I believe sports writers have big duty to help Nigeria salvage sports,” he added.