British and South African police have foiled an attempt by English hooligans to sneak into the country for the World Cup via Dubai.
Police minister Nathi Mthethwa also said around 3,200 identified hooligans had until tomorrow to hand in their passports to British police to prevent them travelling.
“A month ago some of them were trying to go via Dubai to come to South Africa and both the South African and UK forces were able to nip them,” Mthethwa said.
He said around a dozen hooligans were intercepted but would not give details of where they were stopped. South African officials have said they are working closely with British police to prevent hooligans reaching Africa’s first World Cup. .
“We really will not take any nonsense this time around… This commitment by the UK authorities (to ban these hooligans) is not just a commitment it is something concrete.”
South African police have little experience of hooliganism which does not occur at soccer matches there, and are relying on spotters and intelligence information from European forces.
The minister said there was no substance to a report in a South African newspaper that chances of a terror attack during the tournament could be as high as 80 per cent and that Pakistani and Somali militants were running training camps in neighbouring Mozambique.
The paper said some militants may have already crossed into the country.
“There is no specific terrorism threat to South Africa as we speak. I don’t think our intelligence is weak, we are able to challenge anybody with our intelligence,” Mthethwa said.
But he added that this would not make security forces complacent.
“It would, however, be folly for any country to grandstand and proclaim that it is immune to terror attacks.”
Analysts say that although no threats have been identified, the World Cup, as the globe’s most watched sporting event, would be a tempting target for al Qaeda and other groups.
Officials have said they are paying particular attention to protecting eight matches but have only mentioned one of them, the game in Rustenburg between England and the United States on June 12, the second day of the tournament.
“The US has been targeted for some time, it will continue to be and it is not alone. There is this possibility wherever the U.S. is. We have not taken any chances,” Mthethwa said.
He also dismissed threats from white right wing groups in South Africa, saying they were being dealt with by police.
Police have recently broken up what they said were right wing bombing plots, including a plan by white supremacists to plant explosives in black townships.
Go Round FC Searches For Big Stars
Go Round FC’s coach, Ngozi Elechi has revealed that the club is in search of its next big star in the mould of Daniel Gotom and James Eronje.
Both players were top performers for the club in the first round of the just concluded Nigeria National League season before they travelled to Europe.
Elechi said while in training with the team that the coaches are on the lookout for players in their mould that will take the league by storm, though previously inexperienced in league football.
“James and Gotom had not played in the league before they joined Go Round FC last season. They came from academies and did so well for us.
“Those are the kinds of players we hope to discover in our open screening and that is why we decided to embark on this and leave the more experienced players out of the equation for now,” Elechi said.
Tens of players have been camped at the Krisdera Hotel Stadium for over a week, sweating it out and trying to impress the coaches.
“We are still training. We have our eyes on them and expect a lot more to join up within the coming days,” Elechi added.
“When we are done with this, we will now ask the old players of the team to return ahead of the start of the season, as well as those we scouted in the course of the last football season.”
Gure Community Youths Advice On Sporting Activities
The youths of Gure Community in Khana Local Government Area, in Rivers State has been advised to take the game of football as a career because it is now a lucrative business that has the capacity to turn around their fortunes.
Deputy Rector, Academics of Captain Elechi Amadi Polytechnic Rumuola Port Harcourt Dr Moses Neebee, gave the advice during a novelty football match in honour of Late Chief Benson Deezua, at the weekend at the Community School field, Gure.
He further expressed joy that youths in the community have taken the right part by involving themselves in sporting activities.
“ Well, our youth are on the right part because today sports is a lucrative business mostly football. I am also happy the honour given to late Chief Deezua by the community youth” Dr. Neebee said.
According to him, the community would hardly forget the late Chief following his contributions in bringing peace and unity.
“Late Chief played major role during the cult crises and stood by the community.
“ First I want to thank God because late chief Benson Deezua was a man we all should looked upon not only because I am his nephew but the role he play in the Community.
“ Infact, his life and time will hardly be forgotten by Gure Community because during crises in the community he stood by the community.
“ He lived a life worthy of emulation.
“ I pray to God to give us the strength that we need to start from where he stopped” he stated. .
By: Kiadum Edookor
Why We Dominate Sports In Nigeria – Delta Commissioner
The Delta State Commissioner for Information, Hon. Charles Aniagwu, has said that the State Governor Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa places priority on Sports development and formulates policies that will develop sports in the State.
He stated that the Government closed all schools in the State to discover talents and give equal academic opportunity to those who are participating at the ongoing National Sports Festival (NSF) and those that are not doing sports.
Hon. Aniagwu, made the assertion in a press briefing at the NSF holding in Asaba, on Monday, saying that Sports is an indigene of Delta State.
According to him, the reason why Delta State is dominating sports in Nigeria was because the government does not give any private school license to operate if the school does not have field for sporting activities.
“First when we came in, the governor made it clear that no license should be issued to private school that do not have field where students can do sporting activities.
“As I speak to you, all the secondary schools in Delta State have been closed to accommodate activities for this event because we have a good number of secondary students that are participating
After the Sports Festival, they will continue academic activities and we do not want a situation where some will be learning and some are doing sports, we want to give every student equal opportunity of academic activities, but I know they will to do their exams before Christmas” Hon. Aniagwu said.
By: Tonye Orabere In Asaba
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