The Association blames the minister’s aides.
The Abuja chapter of the Sports Writers Association of Nigeria, SWAN, has lashed out at the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Bala Mohammed, over his alleged nonchalant attitude toward the state of sports in the Nigerian capital as well as very poor treatment of female footballers under its employ.
The association said despite persistent calls on the minister to ensure that his appointees chosen to manage sports in the territory are alive to their responsibilities, Mr. Mohammed has shown no meaningful response. It therefore, threatened to call for the resignation of Mr. Mohammed.
Speaking via a press release on Monday, SWAN demanded that the Abuja minister demonstrates his genuine commitment to sports development in the territory by restructuring the sporting department with particular emphasis on the immediate redeployment of the Secretary of Social Development- and daughter of Senate President, David Mark- Blessing Onuh; and the Director of Sports, Alim Musa.
According to SWAN, both administrators have shown beyond doubt that they either do not have the requisite knowledge of running and managing sports or are deliberately undermining the growth of sports in the territory.
The association pointed out the duo as “the architects against the progress of sports in the FCT” and called on Mr. Mohammed to redeploy them to other departments if he really wants sports to thrive in Abuja.
Pay FCT Queens their due
The association also found Mr. Musa culpable in the non-payment of 18 months salaries owed the capital’s female football team, the FCT Queens. Mr. Musa had claimed that the players were not paid because funds were yet to be made available.
However, SWAN claims it is aware that Mr. Mohammed had been releasing funds to the club and wondered why Mr. Musa was blaming the Minister.
“Alim should stop the buck-passing or crying wolf and own up to his responsibilities,” the association said.
It maintained that Mr. Musa is responsible for the low level of sports development in the city as funds pumped into it by the Minister is not commensurate with what is on ground.
“SWAN is aware that more than enough fund is allocated for sports development in the territory but wonders why the level of sports development is not commensurate with the funds released. It is a total negligence on the part of the minister not to show any concern about how the funds are been dispensed and managed. SWAN wishes to state that failure by the FCT minister to heed to our request we shall be forced to demand for his resignation as it will then be obvious that the minister is very less concerned about the welfare of the youths in the territory,” the association said.