By Ben Efe
With only a few days to the IAAF World Championships starting August 4 in London, England, Athletics Federation of Nigeria officials are burning the candle at both ends as they seek funds to pay for athletes travel and expenses.
It was also gathered some of the athletes and officials have yet to secure UK visas due to the shortness of the time that they applied. Only those who have outstanding visas may now be ready to leave for London before the opening ceremony, and this depends on funds. Further more, politicking from the disputed AFN elections is not helping matters. Members of the AFN board are still singing discordant tones with regards to the implementation of agenda.
“At the inaugural meeting of the AFN board the president, Ibrahim Gusau said he was going to look for money to borrow. How far he has gone we don’t really know,” said an athletics official.
“Right now we cannot say for sure when the team is leaving. Though the IAAF will provide tickets for a good number of the athletes, but we have to get there first to get a refund. However, we hope for some good news withing the next 48 hours.”
One of the 17 athletes selected for the championships confirmed yesterday that they have not been told when the team will leave, adding that it was somehow frustrating being kept in the dark.
Missing the champion-ships will be like the final nail on the coffin for Nigerian athletics having failed to present a team at the Africa Junior Championships in Algeria, the IAAF U-18 Championships in Kenya and the Commonwealth Youth Games in the Bahamas.
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