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Remove Politics From Sports-Wike

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Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, has said that Nigeria may never fully actualise the sporting potentials in the country if political considerations were allowed to always interfere with what happens within the sports industry.
The governor made the observation while speaking with journalists, last Sunday evening at the Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium in Omagwa, Ikwerre Local Government Area of Rivers State.
Wike watched the match between Rivers United Football Club and Gombe United Football Club at the stadium used to mark the final match in the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL), and it ended in favour of Rivers Untied F.C 1-0.
The event was also used for the coronation of Rivers United F.C. of Rivers State as the Champions of Nigeria Football League 2021/2022 Season.
Wike stated that those who should superintend over sports affairs in Nigeria should be seasoned sports administrators and allowed to man the sector professionally.
The governor also pointed out that the random selection of persons to satisfy quota consideration has not truly been of any help in identifying the best talents and this has frustrated the growth of sports on an enduring scale in the country.
“Let us remove politics from sports. Let’s go for the best. NFF, the Super Eagles, Falcons, we must do things based on merit, getting those who are qualified.
“Let us not say take this from East, take from South, take from West, and take from North in order to make up the list, no. That won’t be the best for us.
“I want to tell Nigerians to know that sports should go beyond politics. Sports should not be confined to the political arena. We should allow people who have the talents; we should allow people who have the capacity to develop sports in Nigeria on board.”
Wike expressed delight over the victory clinched by the Rivers United F.C. as the champions of the Nigerian League.
He stated that to put a team together to play as one and to win a trophy required firm leadership, which he encouraged.
“When I came on board in 2015, we had Sharks Football Club of Port Harcourt and we had Eagle Cement Football Club. I said, this is one state and for now (then), it is important to put our talents together so we will have a formidable team.
“It was not easy to achieve that and we didn’t expect it to be easy that way. But we thank God today that all our efforts have been fruitful in seeing that we have won the Nigerian League.
“So, leadership is key in everything you’re doing and if you don’t have that leadership, it would not have been possible for us.”
Wike said he was delighted that Rivers State has won the Nigeria League and would represent the country in the Champions League.
He gave the assurance that his administration would give the best support to Rivers United F.C as it prepares for the Champions League in order for them to return with the trophy from that competition.
Speaking further, Wike said that since government was a continuum, his administration has done the best it can for sports development in the state, and believes that his successor would take over from where he has stopped.
“The question is about what is good for Rivers people. So, I don’t think that any governor or government that will be in charge of this state after my tenure will relent with what we are talking about in terms of sports development. It concerns youth development.”
In his remarks, Minister of Sports, Sunday Dare, said it was exciting for him to witness the emergence of Rivers United F.C. as champions of Nigerian League.
“I think that what is happening today is exciting for me. 20 games, and 10 clubs playing their final game and we are here to watch Rivers United being crowned the leader of the premier league. I think, it is exciting”.
Expressing his expectations what the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) should brace up to do, especially with their election in view in September, 2022, Dare said NFF must do what was needful and give Nigerians fresh breath of air.
“You know, there is always room for improvement and we know that NFF must be able to take care of their business. I have said it, they have a status, they have a Congress, they should just do what’s needful and give Nigerians the fresh breathe and support they need.”

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Commissioner Advises Youths To Take Sports As  Career 

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The Rivers State Commissioner for Sports, Barrister Christopher Green, has advised youths of the State  to shun social vices in the society and take sports as a career for their livelihood.
According to him, sports should be an advantage and attraction for them to shun social, vices in the society adding that in his younger age, he went to school and he took Sports very seriously.
Green said this in a chat with sports journalists shortly after a basketball tournament in Port Harcourt.
He stated that he started playing basketball when he was young and he was mentored by good coaches both in character and the game.
“The youths should see sports as an advantage and attraction for them to leave those vices.
‘When I was younger like them, I went to school and I played basketball.
‘I had good coaches; they mentored me in character and even in the game.
‘So they should see the opportunity of the game as an opportunity to better the society,’’he said.

By: Kiadum Edookor

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NFF Must Pay Me N157m With Interest – Rohr

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Former Super Eagles Coach, Gernot Rohr, has said that Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) would have to pay him his outstanding salary with interest along with the current dollar rate following their delay in making the payment.
The Franco-German was relieved of his job as the Eagles gaffer last December, following a series of underwhelming performances by the three-time African champions.
Despite moves by the NFF to pay his salary until the end of his contract, which should have expired in December, Rohr, the Eagles’ longest-serving coach took the case to world football bod,y FIFA, demanding an additional £1m for breach of contract without just cause but FIFA instead approved $377,879.46 (N155million as of December 2021 and N157m at the current official dollar to naira rate).
A ruling by the FIFA players’ status chamber in May ordered the NFF to pay Rohr the money within 45 days, after ending his contract abruptly adding that the country’s football governing body would be sanctioned if Rohr was not paid in full within 45 days.
“If full payment (including all applicable interest) is not made within 45 days of notification of this decision, the respondent (the NFF) shall be imposed a restriction on receiving a percentage of development funding, up until the due amounts are paid,” said the FIFA decision.
However, 85 days after the ruling by FIFA, the former Bordeaux manager told news men that he was yet to get payment from the NFF.
Speaking with Tidesports source  Rohr said, “Since the FIFA judgment, they (NFF) didn’t pay anything.
“FIFA paid me a part of the sum they owe me and that is normally (from) a part of the development budget they pay to African federations.
“My lawyer reminded them, FIFA and NFF, that interests have to be paid. The dollar amount will grow with time and this is the law.”
Asked whether he would be taking the NFF to the Court of Arbitration for Sports, the gaffer added, “No, because normally FIFA gives a guarantee for payment.

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Ahoada-East Loves Sporting Activities -Council Boss

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The Executive Chairman of Ahoada East Local Governnment Area of Rivers State, Barr Benjamin Ekeh has explained the essence of the annual traditional wrestling in his Area,which he said is to usher in resting period after the farming season .
Speaking to journalists on the sideline of the opening ceremony of this year,s annual traditional wrestling festival at Ogbo-Akoh Community in Ahoada, the Council Chairman said everybody was happy and the atmosphere was electrifying.
Ekeh said that apart from, wrestling, Ahoada East also holds school sports where budding talents are discovered.
“School, do hold their inter-house sports annually.
According to him, council also holds football competition yearly, in the LGA.
“Apart from sporting activities,we also hold wrestling competitions among the three clans that make up Ahoada, namely Upata, Ehuda and Akoh.
“So it is the turn of Akoh this year to host the wrestling festival and as a council we support them financially.
“The wrestling festival marks the end of farming season for the year.
“What you are seeing here is the opening ceremony of the wrestling festival,”the chairman explained.
Ben Ekeh pointed out that his people love sports naturally.
He emphasized the importance of sports to include, physical fitness, wealth creation and redirection of youths from social vices.
“Ahoada people love sports, you can see everybody is happy.’’

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