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Ogba, Rosa Collins disagree on Nigerian coaches


Solomon Ogba.

Outgoing President of the Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN), Chief Solomon Ogba and former Africa triple jump champion, Rosa Collins may be towing a different line regarding the contribution of local coaches to the fortune of the nation’s athletics in recent years.

While Ogba, who has declared his intention not to re-contest in the fast approaching Sports Federations polls, is of the view that local coaches have not added much to the development of Nigerian athletes in recent years, Collins, who is among 10 contenders jostling to replace Ogba, has declared she would sink and swim with local coaches, if she is elected as AFN President.

Ogba had told The Guardian in a recent interview that Nigerian coaches ‘overload’ athletes with training, and in the process ‘kill’ their speed and endurance before the commencement of a competition.


“I will continue to say it that one of the major problems with Nigerian athletics is our local coaches, who overload athletes with training programmes. Why is it that Nigerian athletes run better once they travel out of the country to pitch their tent with other coaches? Sports has gone scientific and that is what our coaches have refused to know,” Ogba had stated.

However, Collins pointed out in a chat with The Guardian during the week that if she won the AFN presidential race on June 13 in Abuja, her priority would be to encourage home-based athletes and coaches. “These athletes feel dumped after being used by the AFN. You can see that we no longer win medals in international competitions because the past AFN board used only foreign-based athletes.

“Our local-based athletes need help and my priority is to make them happy and Nigerians smile again. A situation whereby the AFN president is in London or Paris today and USA tomorrow, while the athletes are languishing in camp back home without food to eat won’t repeat itself under my tenure,” Collins added.

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