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The Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Mr. Sunday Dare alongside his Permanent Secretary, Alhaji Ismail Abubakar and the Ministry’s Anti-Doping Committee appeared before the House Committee on Sports, led by its Chairman, Hon. Olumide Osoba.
It was a meeting that provided the Minister with an opportunity to also shed more light on allowances of the women’s basketball team, D’Tigress, payments made to the NBBF and the doping allegations against some Team Nigeria athletes to the Olympics in Tokyo, Japan.
In his report about the doping allegations, the Minister corrected the erroneous impression that many had by clearing the notion that the athletes were not guilty of doping or taking any form of illegal, performance enhancing substance.
“The Athletes were required to take three out of competition tests at three weeks intervals, which of course they did but took it a week earlier, and that was why they were not allowed to participate in the Olympics. It should also be noted that, these ten athletes were not banned from participating in the Olympics but were ineligible to compete due to their missing the mandatory out-of-competition tests at the appropriate times,” Dare said.
On the allowances of D’Tigress, it was through the adopt-an-athlete initiative of the Minister that the sum of two hundred and thirty thousand dollars ($230,000) was raised from a group of Banks for the D’Tigress and D’Tigers. This money came in during the Olympics and was deposited into the NBBF’s CBN account.
According to the Minister, “we issued a statement regarding the $230,000 and on return from Olympics the players of both teams were asked to submit their account details so the CBN could process the payment at once. As we speak, we have only details of the female team; D’Tigress and none of D’Tigers obliged to this.
“Prior to now, the CBN have been instructed to process payment of the 12 female team members as first trench payment.
“The process for the payment for D’Tigress is in place and near completion, the money is intact in the CBN account as CBN has provided statement of account to prove that the $230,000 NBBF fund was not misappropriated.”
According to one of the members of the Committee, Hon. Dachung Musa, representing Jos South/Jos East Federal consistency, “We are satisfied now that you have provided the right information, especially the fact that our athletes were not banned or found guilty of taking illegal substances. I will dare to say, information is key in portraying the good image of our dear country.”
The Committee thereafter, summoned the former NBBF President, Engineer Musa Kida to appear before it within two weeks.