Thursday, February 06, 2014

Chairman, Media Committee of the Nigeria Football Federation Chief Emeka Inyama and Coach of the Super Eagles of Nigeria Stephen Keshi have reacted with shock on a story in a national daily that the CHAN eagles were abandoned by Sports Minister, Mallam Bolaji Abdulahi, NFF Presient, Alhaji Aminu Maigari and the leadership of the nation's governing football body in the run-up to the third place match against Zimbabwe last Saturday in South Africa.

Inyama, who spoke first said the report was not only a calculated mischief by the reporter but one designed to downplay the huge impact the Super Eagles made at its maiden outing at the CHAN African Nations Tourney.

 “I am shocked to read such a report from a respected medium, who should know better, because the Sports Minister in the company of the NFF President did not only host the team in Bloemfontein, but also redeemed his pledge to the team and even when the team did not win against Ghana, he gave the amount he promised for a win because he was impressed by the team. Does that translate to abandonment?, Inyama asked

Inyama, who was a one time Editor-in-Chief of  the defunct SportsLink and former Abia State Sports Commissioner said the NFF President, Aminu Maigari has been with the team nearly all of the tourney and was addressing the team regularly, which was widely reported in the media adding that it was shocking that a newspaper will at the end of the championship now report that the team was abandoned by very responsible public office holders. 

“We hope this rather tragic report is withdrawn by those concerned in the interest of sports growth”, he declared.

Keshi, who spoke through team’s Media Officer, Ben Alaiya, said he does not understand what is meant by the word abandoned, because the Sports Minister, NFF President and several top members of the sports fraternity were with the team throughout the duration of the tournament.

 “We may not have seen much of the Supporters Club in the third place but the Minster and NFF were always with the team throughout the tournament”.

He added that the Minister and the NFF President even addressed the team in a widely publicized event, wondering what the team needs to reach its goals in crucial encounters in major competitions. “I was shocked when I read the story and I think we should always respect those in authority without blackmail”, he said.


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