Nigerian Aths Federation taken to task

:mad: Athlete Advocates Sack of AFN Board

This Day (Lagos)

February 19, 2004
Posted to the web February 19, 2004

Ayodeji Fashikun

The members of the Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN) have been recommended to be sacked in view of the shame and neglect that they have brought to bear on the game by abandoning a former national hero, late Sunday Emmanuel, in death.

United States of America based sprinter and long jumper, Tunde Suleiman, made the call in an exclusive interview he granted THISDAYSports in the national Stadium yesterday while reacting to the death of his former colleague and friend saying, "this was what they did to Alozie and Obikwelu who abandoned the nation.’

According to the international athlete who is at home to hone his preparation for the new athletics season.

You will recall what happened to Gloria Alozie and Francis Obikwelu. She lost her fiance, who is equally an athlete, during the Sydney Olympics game. She was frustrated to the extent that she should bear the cost of transporting his corpse back home.

He said, “The AFN did not commiserate or even call a press conference about his death. Now it is Sunday Emmanuel’s turn, they were not even at his burial last Tuesday. They are a big disgrace to the nation. All of them should be fired.”

All Nigerian athletes should come together, reason together and not think that afterall it is not me. What happened to Sunday can happen to anybody. This is one person who has brought honours to this nation, having been representing Nigeria since 1987. It was only the last All African games he did not represent Nigeria. Were he to be a footballer, even the Ministry will play a big role in the burial ceremony.

The tall graduate of Banking and Finance from Kwara State Polytechnic, Ilorin urged an intervention package for the family. "his baby was just one month when he died in the auto accident. The family deserve some form of compensation, as this can happen to anybody.

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Ruing how the nation through the conducts of the AFN abandoned one of its most prized heroes in death, he asked, "what about those of us who are still alive? These are the kind of conducts that make some athletes to change their nationality. Who will blame them?’

The former national long jump champion added that, "Sunday has been my friend for long time. When I came in two weeks ago from America and heard of his death, I knew it was a great loss to the nation.