Nigerian track and field coaches and technical officials have vehemently rejected the purported appointment of Sunday Adeleye as the technical director/chairman technical sub-committee of the Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN).
The athletics technical officials on Monday rose from a meeting in Ilorin, the Kwara State capital, on the sideline of the on-going 2017 National Youth Games to express anger and disbelief at the leadership of the AFN for appointing an unqualified person as the leader of the engine room of the federation.
“It is embarrassing and alarming that our federation can deviate from modern norms and practices in the appointment of somebody to lead and guide all qualified Nigerian coaches and technical officials to announce someone who does not merit the position, someone who lacks the technical knowhow and the requisite academic qualification to lead us,” he officials wrote in their communique after the meeting, which was made available to newsmen present in Ilorin.
“Adeleye was appointed as an athletes representative to take charge of the interest of the athletes on the board while we freely elected Brown Ebewele to be our representative and leader on the board,” the commnunique further read.
The officials also restated their confidence in Ebewele to guide them through as their elected leader.
Meanwhile president of Nigerian Coaches Association Gabriel Okon has said that the position of a technical committee chairman/technical director is for an individual who has a rich background in coaching and officiating matters.
“Adeleye is neither a coach nor a technical official. Coaches are certified by both the National Insitutue for Sports in Nigeia and by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) while officiating officials also go through their training before they can be certified by the federation in conjunction with the IAAF. So you want to bring somebody who does not know what coaching entails and has never attempted any officiating course to come and lead us. Tell me, what will he be telling us? It is like telling a primary school pupil to lead a group of students comprising secondary school and University undergraduates.”
Some of the coaches and technical officials at the meeting are former Nigeria 100m record holder Seun Ogunkoya, who is a coach in the employment of OndoState, Hulda Nkwocha from Federal Capital Territory, Adamu Musa from Kebbi, Ochoma Ephraim from Enugu State, Awe Adeniyi from Kwara State and former Nigeria javelin champion Pius Bazighe from Bayelsa state.