DOHA 2019: What really happened – Gabriel Okon

DOHA 2019: What really happened – Gabriel Okon

Board member of the AFN, Gabriel Okon has stated that the embattled factional president of the Athletics Federation of Nigeria, AFN, Hon. Ibrahim Gusau and Sunday Adeleye were responsible for the country’s failure at the World Athletics in Doha.

According to him, the duo solely picked the team that represented the country without ‘carrying the board along’ during the process.

It will be recalled that there was bureaucratic mix-up involving sprinters, Blessing Okagbare and Divine Oduduru in Doha where they were initially disqualified after breaching the competition rules.


“For the records, we never met to select the team or inform the team on the procedure on how the World Athletics was going to be executed.

“When a team is travelling out of the country, the technical team would meet but in this case we had no idea on who was going to run in Doha.

“We had faith in Gusau because he was a former Congressman but he runs the federation without due process, he suspends people anyhow.

“For an instance, some athletes’ names were misspelt and they were not allowed to board the flight. The General Secretary, Adamu told me he had no idea of how the team was picked,” he said.

Meanwhile, the AFN board on Monday inaugurated a fact finding committee to look into the activities of the suspended president, Engr. Shehu Ibrahim Gusau.

Relaying the terms of reference, the committee is charged to evaluate the PUMA sponsorships terms of engagement, possible payments made, equipment delivered to AFN.

The board also charged the committee to examine the records of expenditure of major championships, including but not limited to the Africa U18 and U20 Athletics Championships in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire.

The committee was also charged to investigate the IAAF World Championships in London and Doha, Qatar in 2017 and 2019 respectively and ascertain the amount approved by the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development and genuineness of all payments.

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