President of the Athletics Federation of Nigeria, Tonobok Okowa, says the body is yet to receive any official communication from the World Athletics, the United States Department of Justice or schools over the involvement of two Nigerian collegiates athletes in a fraud case in the US.
Emmanuel Ineh, a long jumper, and Toluwani Adebakin, a sprinter, both risk 10 years in prison after being convicted in the United States for their part in a “complex fraud scheme.”
“I have not received any information about that, not officially,” Okowa simply told our correspondent when contacted over the matter.
Ineh represented Nigeria at the 2018 Youth Olympic Games, where he won silver, while Adebakin is a 200m and 400m runner.
A further check on their profiles on the World Athletics website showed that both athletes had a number of collegiate competitions under their belts between 2018 and 2022.
According to a statement released by the US attorney’s office of the southern district of Mississippi, Ineh and Adebakin pleaded guilty to charges of “sending thousands of illicitly obtained proceeds to fraudsters in Nigeria as part of a larger mail fraud, wire fraud and money laundering conspiracy.”
The scheme is said to have involved students of “multiple higher learning institutions in the United States.”
“Two collegiate athletes were convicted today before U.S. District Judge Kristi Johnson for transferring thousands of dollars to Nigeria as part of a complex fraud scheme, announced U.S. Attorney Darren J. LaMarca and Special Agent in Charge Jermicha Fomby of Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Jackson Field Office,” the statement dated November 10 read.
Race For Zenith Bank B’Ball League Top Four Resumes
The battle for the final two slots for the 2023 Zenith Bank Women’s Basketball League will begin at the Stephen Keshi Stadium, Asaba, Delta State, with MFM Women Basketball Club and Bayelsa Blue Whales looking to secure one of the two slots.
Two teams; Nigerian Customs and Air Warriors secured two slots from the Savannah Conference and now, the Atlantic Conference teams will battle to win the two other slots to complete the Top Four for Final Phase.
The Second Phase of the Atlantic Conference was postponed due to the recently concluded National Youth Games and with the arrival of all teams, hostilities began yesterday with Bayelsa Whales and MFM taking on Dolphins and Sunshine Angels, respectively.
MFM, who finished second in the last edition will have to be at their best as they are currently third on the table coming from the First Phase where they won three games while losing two while Bayelsa Whales on the other hand are second with four wins and a loss against undefeated First Bank who is poised to finish top of the table.
First Bank will hope to continue their impressive form when they meet IGP Queens who are also hoping to create an upset and get a slot to be in Lagos for the finals scheduled later in October.
NRFF President Hails ValueJet’s Contribution to Rugby Development
President of Nigeria Rugby Football Federation, NRFF, Dr Ademola Are has hailed the impact of ValueJet’s to rugby development and sports generally in the country.
Dr Are who was speaking on the sideline of the just concluded National Youth Games in Asaba, where Delta State emerged winners in both the male and female events of rugby, said ValueJet’s contributions to sports development could not be overlooked..
“We can’t over emphasize the impact of ValueJet in Nigeria rugby because they came at a time we needed them the most and all thanks to the president of the company, Kunle Soname who went the extra mile to ensure that Nigeria senior men national team, the Black Stallions participated at Africa Sevens Olympic qualifier in Harare, Zimbabwe.
“Despite not being the most popular sport in the country, he saw the potentials in rugby when others were hesitating, just like he has for other businesses of his with his canny business acumen.
Peseiro Congratulates Rivers Utd
Super Eagles head coach Jose Peseiro has congratulated Rivers United following their victory over Etoile Filante of Burkina Faso which ensured their qualification to the group stages of the CAF Confederation Cup.
Rivers United defeated their visitors 2-0 in the second leg of the second preliminary round of CAF Confederation Cup at the Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium, Port Harcourt on Sunday night.
Rivers United missed two penalties in the game before Alex Oyowah scored the opener in the 89th minute. Oyowah completed his brace in the 10th minute of added time after converting a penalty to end the score 2-0.
The first leg of the encounter ended 0-0 two weeks ago at the Stade Muncipal Yamoussoukro, Cote D’Ivoire, giving the Pride of Rivers a 2-0 aggregate win and a group stage ticket.
Peseiro hailed the former Nigeria league champions on his personal X handle following their achievement.
“Congratulations to Rivers United on making it to the CAF Confederation Cup group stage. Best of luck in the competition!,” he wrote.
Rivers United reached the quarter-final stage of the CAF Confederation Cup last season before being eliminated by Young Africans of Tanzania.
Up next for Stanley Eguma led side is their first Nigeria Premier Football League NPFL game of the season against Niger Tornadoes slated for the Ahmadu Bello Stadium, Kaduna on Sunday.
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