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Impeachment looms in AFN


Ibrahim Gusau

• Board members angry with Gusau over appointments
The President of Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN), Ibrahim Gusau may have incurred the wrath of his board members following his alleged decision to appoint Sunday Adeleye as Technical Director of the federation.

The Guardian had reported last weekend that Gusau had perfected his arrangement to appoint Adeleye, a former 400m runner as the Technical Director against the wish of majority of the board members, who favour Brown Ebewele for the position.

Spokesman of the board, Dare Esan had issued a release shortly after The Guardian’s publication last weekend insisting there was no iota of truth in the report. He stated then that there were some elections that came with positions during the June 13 polls into the board of the federation in Abuja.

“The positions of technical committee, athletes representative and media representative on the board cannot be filled by just anybody. For example, Sunday Adeleye was elected to represent the interest of the athletes on the board, while Brown Ebewele was elected as the representative of the technical bodies of the federation viz the coaches and the technical officials, which means he is the natural head of the technical committee of the
AFN,” Esan stated.

However, majority of the board members were shocked when Gusau announced Sunday Adeleye as AFN Technical Director on Nigeria Television Authority (NTA) on Wednesday.

Speaking with The Guardian yesterday, AFN Vice President, Olamide George described Gusau’s action as ‘undemocratic’ and against the rules governing athletics in the country. “It was a rude shock to a majority of us. Section 9, sub-section 9:1 of the guidelines states that a simple majority or two third majority of the board members should sit and discuss on matters relating to appointments. Leadership is not by authority, but it is by character and influence. I can tell you that a majority of us are not part of that decision to appoint Adeleye as Technical Director of AFN and we won’t take it.”

Though, Olamide George refused to comment further, The Guardian learnt yesterday that nine out of the 13 members on the board have already concluded plans to impeach Gusau.

Meanwhile, the Spokesman of the board, Esan yesterday called on members of the public, especially the Nigerian athletics family to disregard the purported list of sub-committees as it did not emanate from the AFN board, which has the constitutional mandate to constitute and approve the sub-committees.

In a release yesterday, Esan said some board members of the AFN have rejected the released by the Federation’s secretariat. “All over the world, the post of the technical committee chairman or technical director of an athletics federation has always been filled by individuals with huge coaching experience and background in sports science because sports, especially track and field has gone really scientific.

“In the absence of an individual with such qualification on the board, then the board of the federation can look at an accomplished ex-international, who has participated at either the Olympic Games or the IAAF World Championships or both. The individual our president has illegally assigned that role to is a dilettante as far as the position is concerned.

“In fact, it is only in Nigeria that an athletes’ representative has been accorded the status of a board member. All over the world the athletes representatives only head an athletes commission created by the constitution of the board,” Esan stated.

The board members have given Gusau two weeks to call for a board meeting to enable them chart a positive course for the federation in view of the very daunting task ahead.

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