On Nigeria’s Participation At The 2020 Tokyo Olympics – Sunday Dare

On Nigeria’s Participation At The 2020 Tokyo Olympics – Sunday Dare 2
A file photograph of the Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Mr Sunday Dare.
Not wanting so as to add to the general public distraction, I’ve intentionally waited till the tip of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games earlier than making any observations concerning the assorted studies on Nigeria’s participation within the quadrennial video games.
2. This was out of respect for our athletes who had dedicated a lot effort and made such appreciable private sacrifice with the intention to symbolize our nation as greatest as they may.  Overall, we ought to be happy with Team Nigeria and the trouble they made. The backside line is that these video games ought to at all times be concerning the athletes and the spirit of pleasant competitors and excellence the Olympics are supposed to engender.
3. Sadly, some individuals appear to not have embraced both the nice reason for our nationwide athletic pursuits or the collegial and noble spirit that the Olympics promote.
4. The rancour and confusion some individuals appear intent on sowing are terribly misplaced given the spectacular efficiency of our workforce and good spirit with which they carried out. The Tokyo 2020 Olympics are actually over, which suggests we will start to truthfully and objectively assess what was completed in addition to what we should do to enhance efficiency for future contests.
5. Nigeria succeeded with two (2) medals – a silver in wrestling received by Blessing Oborodudu and a bronze in lengthy bounce received by Ese Brume. Their performances have been inspiring for they affirmed we will and may compete on the highest ranges throughout the complete vary of sports activities occasions. Yes, we had wished and labored for extra medals. But we should additionally put issues in perspective. The medal final result on the 2020 Tokyo Olympics stands as Nigeria’s greatest end result within the final 13 years.
6. Moreover, the athletes of Team Nigeria did their nation proud. Many of them reached the finals of their respective sports activities and, competing with all they’d, have been in competition for medals till the ultimate second. Anyone who noticed their efforts would don’t have anything however the utmost respect for them, their coaches, and all of the technical employees that made Tokyo attainable.
7. I thank President Muhammadu Buhari for his unrelenting assist for Sports and Youth improvement and certainly for the chance to serve and lead our participation at these video games. Team Nigeria positioned 74th place on the ultimate  Olympic medal desk amongst 205 collaborating international locations, regardless of our small contingent to the video games. We have been eighth amongst 52 African international locations that participated. Team Nigeria excelled in lots of areas that engender hope for higher success sooner or later.
8. Nigeria had 5 Olympic finalists in 100 meters Hurdles Women, Short Put, Long bounce, Wrestling, and 100 meters males. Team Nigeria broke the 13-year-old jinx of no medal in Long bounce and 25 years of no finalist within the males’s 100 meters,  and secured a medal in wrestling for the very first time. Overall, our efficiency was good, and extra importantly, it’s headed in the proper path.
9. While the final developments and total efficiency have been constructive, I have to point out two unlucky incidents that occurred.
10. First is the mishap leading to 10 Team Nigeria athletes being dominated ineligible to compete for lacking their obligatory Out of Competition Test, OTC. When discover of this ruling received to me, I instantly mobilized my workforce and the AFN management to see how the scenario might be salvaged. We mounted a vigorous enchantment course of with the Athletics Integrity Unit, AIU, and had the workforce members full the assessments.  However,  timing turned the important concern. Despite our energetic enchantment, the deciding committee made its announcement which gave no latitude to our workforce members for what was solely an inadvertent lapse.
11. The adversarial determination was painful to simply accept. We had ready rigorously and eagerly for the Olympics with the expectation that every particular person, federation, coach, and athlete would additionally full the mandatory preparations required of them. As Minister, I ensured that every one obligatory approvals have been accomplished so that every one requisite assessments and exams might be well timed accomplished. For me, this unlucky incident is most painful as a result of these athletes had ready lengthy and exhausting and in addition in view of the difficult circumstances because of COVID-19.
12. As the Minister I have to bear some institutional accountability for this lapse.  I additionally needed to rely and anticipate that every particular person within the lengthy and sometimes technical chain will carry out their position expeditiously and with precision. Unfortunately, someplace alongside the road, somebody failed of their accountability and as Minister, I bear the accountability and brunt of criticsm.  But that’s not sufficient. I have to transfer to make sure that Nigeria by no means experiences one other such second. I’ve ordered a full investigation that won’t solely uncover what occurred however may also, advocate a course of the place such lapses can by no means happen sooner or later and provoke leveraging compliance monitoring expertise to guardrail this.
13. I’ve personally apologized to the affected athletes. Here and now, I personally apologize to all Nigerians for this ineligibility episode. The AFN has additionally taken accountability and apologized to the athletes and to Nigerians.
14. Already, a brand new Medical and Anti-Doping Commission has been set as much as set up a foolproof system of testing and guarantee Nigeria exits the A Categorization by WADA.
Also, Blessing Okagbare stays one among our greatest athletes who has served Nigeria properly. We empathize along with her. Nigeria will monitor carefully developments round her short-term suspension and enchantment.
15. The second concern needed to do with the attire offered for the workforce.
16. The Ministry’s accountability and that of the 38 National Sporting Federations, NSFs of kitting are properly spelled out. The manufacturing of normal wears for Team Nigeria is at all times the accountability of the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development. Procurement for the Competition Wear is the accountability of the respective federations due to the truth that every sport requires specialised outfits. Boxing, Wrestling, Athletics, and every of the federations want completely different gears. The Ministry supplies budgetary assist to the federations.
 17. The amount of competitors wears given to every athlete is the choice of the actual federation. No complaints got here to my discover till the Tik Tok Video posted by one of many athletes went viral. We Immediately stepped in to handle the scenario.
The Federation concerned has been directed to supply an in depth clarification concerning the package.
18. Team Nigeria was correctly kitted for the video games with a 9-item backpack utilizing an area producer in concord with President Buhari’s coverage on native content material.
19. Before any federation which is a element of Team Nigeria nonetheless wears any model, it should check with the Ministry and the NOC for clearance and approval. The Ministry and NOC should be totally conscious of the contract particulars by the Federation to guard the rights and freedoms of the athletes and guarantee Nigeria’s pursuits are protected. In this case, the Ministry needs to state that the contractual association between AFN and Puma previous to the Olympic Games has generated plenty of controversy between the previous President of the Federation and the previous Board members. I cannot need to go into too many particulars on this concern as a result of it’s sub judice. Suffice it to say that the Ministry was not a part of the settlement. The Tik Tok video on the problem was an try to create a media frenzy to embarrass Nigeria.
20. Following from the above, the problem referring to the competitors wears vis a vis the alleged association with Puma is most unlucky. I’ve demanded a correct investigation into this matter. Such an inquiry will unearth the reality about how some individuals tried to sabotage Nigeria’s participation and undermine the nation and our Olympic athletes.
21. On assumption of workplace as Minister of Youth and Sports 2 years in the past, I started a gradual reformation of the National Sports Federations, NSFs.  For years, a couple of of those federations have been very badly run. These reforms will take time. There already is and shall be stiff resistance from some quarters, which is what we’re witnessing now. But we’re resolute to ascertain higher sport’s administration, a legacy President Muhammadu Buhari is desirous of bequeathing to our sports activities improvement.
 22. There is far to hope for the long run. In Tokyo, most of our athletes have been younger and debutants – first-time Olympians.
23. The Tokyo 2020 Olympics expertise will transfer and problem me to push our sports activities to a better degree and search a greater situation for all our athletes.
24. Team Nigeria went to Tokyo 2020 and competed in opposition to the perfect on the earth. Two Olympics medals and a statistical efficiency that has a spot within the historical past of our Olympic participation regardless of being one among our smallest contingents. We can carry out even significantly better if all of us maintain onto the teachings discovered.
25. I  stay grateful to all of the athletes that so represented Nigeria properly.

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On Nigeria’s Participation At The 2020 Tokyo Olympics – Sunday Dare

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