Former Minister of Sports, Mr Solomon Dalung has said the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development is accountable for the poor performance of the Nigerian team at the ongoing Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
The Nigerian team’s performance at the Olympics was marred by avoidable athletes disqualification, Jersey shortage and conflict between officials and athletes for different reasons.
The poor outing mounted pressure on the head of the Ministry, Sunday Dare as Nigerians have called for his sack or resignation.
Reacting to the situation when he appeared as a guest on Arise TV, Dalung claimed that the sports minister failed to provide leadership that could protect the image of Nigeria.
Dalung, who was Dare’s predecessor, stated that the ministry caused the country’s woes at the global event by dissolving boards of federations 84 days to the beginning of the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo.
The sports minister Dare had on April 29, 2021, dissolved the boards of 31 National Sports Federations and constituted three-man Caretaker Committees to take charge of the federations.
He said, “I think the dissolution of boards. It is a lack of patriotic political will to consolidate on the gains on the ground.
“When I was the minister, I continued from where my predecessor ended. When we get to the field, we built on previous successes and Nigeria did very well.
“Dissolving federations three months to Olympics is an indication that we are not prepared for Olympics. No (Army) general dissolves his troops on the eve of an attack and expect to win a war. The dissolved boards have trained and catered for the he athletes for more than two years. Crises are part of human existence, the management is what determines the quality of leadership. I inherited many crises, but I resolved them.
“Leadership is about taking responsibilities. When things go wrong, somebody has to be responsible. The entire drama of shame is avoidable. This is a shame that the country has found itself.”