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AFN’s five-man panel to probe Gusau over IAAF’s ‘missing’ $135, 000

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Alhaji Ibrahim Shehu Gusau

• World Athletics body writes The Guardian
The Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN) has set up a five-man committee to probe its former president, Ibrahim Gusau, who was impeached on Tuesday following his alleged role in the ‘missing’ $135, 000 paid to Nigeria in 2017 by world athletics body, IAAF.

Gusau was impeached in the office of the Sports Minister, Solomon Dalung in Abuja two days ago, but the board decided to constitute the five-man panel to unravel how he and a few people in the AFN spent the IAAF money.

The committee is headed by the representative of police on the AFN board, DIG Sunny Mohammed. Other members are Brown Ebewele, Rosa Collins, Gabriel Okon and AFN’s secretary, Elijah Ademu.

A member of the committee, who spoke with The Guardian yesterday, hinted that Gusau had some questions to answer on what happened to N39 million allegedly approved by the sports minister to be refunded to the IAAF shortly after the Asaba 2018 African Senior Athletics Championships.

The former AFN boss is also expected to explain what he did with the sum of N13 million allegedly paid into his private account for the upkeep of Nigerian contingent to the last African U18/U20 Athletics Championship in Abidjan.

“We were told that the sports minister approved N39 million for Gusau to pay to IAAF, which could have prevented the international embarrassment Nigeria had over the ‘missing’ $135,000. He has to tell us what he did with the money, and who gave him the approval.

“Again, Gusau has to explain to us all he knows about the N13 million he collected for the trip to Abidjan. No board member was aware of such money. The impression he gave to us was that the sports ministry refused to approve money for the trip. Don’t forget that our athletes and coaches spent four days on the road to Abidjan and four days back from the championship. No allowance was paid to anybody,” the official stated.

Meanwhile, the IAAF wrote to The Guardian yesterday saying that an amicable resolution had been reached with Sports Minister, Solomon Dalung on the ‘missing’ $135,000, adding that the matter would be settled very soon.

The letter signed by Head of Communications, Nicole Jeffery said: “The IAAF can confirm that Honourable Solomon Dalung, Minister for Sport in Nigeria, and IAAF President, Sebastian Coe spoke by telephone yesterday (Tuesday) evening to discuss the overdue payment of the funds that were mistakenly paid by the IAAF to the Athletics Federation of Nigeria. An amicable resolution has been reached and the matter will be settled very soon.  The IAAF would like to thank Minister Dalung for his assurances and continued interest in the sport of Athletics.”

Thank you for your interest in athletics.”


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