Mr. Jonathan, No, You can’t suspend Nigerian Football!

Adeola Aderounmu

Is Goodluck Jonathan A Dictator in the Making?

There are reports that Goodluck Jonathan has suspended the Nigerian Football Team from participating in future competitions for the next 2 years. According to him this will allow Nigeria to reorganise her football.

Sometimes I wonder if Nigerian politicians are from planet earth. Does Mr. Jonathan know FIFA rules concerning football? Do we have advisers in Abuja? Does Nigeria have a Ministry of Sports that Jonathan can consult for information and knowledge about football?

You cannot suspend your team from International competition. If you do, FIFA will help you by extending the suspension for another 2 or 4 years.

Nigeria does not need to suspend her national team from International competition to be able to do things the right way. Common sense shows that that is a negative approach.

There are ignorant people running football in Nigeria and we have said it many times without number: let those who know about football run our football. Let seasoned administrators and tested hands handle our sports. There are trained sports administrators in Nigeria. Look for them.

And when it concerned football look for our ex-internationals at home and abroad. They can do things right. Bring back Stephen Keshi, call on Oliseh among many others. The list is endless!

Segun Odegbami has been in this field for decades. Look for him and people like him scattered across Nigeria. Let those who know football run our football.

Mr Jonathan does not need to suspend the National Team. That is bad judgement and an indication of dictatorial tendencies. We are supposed to be under civilian rule, not tyranny or military rule. You can’t wake up from a bad dream and say the National team is dissolved.

Please get this right. There are thousands of football talents in Nigeria who can take our country to greater heights. Catch them young and play them with their real ages!

I think the most important thing is to eliminate politics from our sports. Until then, we are only chasing shadows like Mr Jonathan is doing now.

On the other hand, rather than using such a strong hand on our football, Mr. Jonathan should use his strong hand and will to bring prosperity to Nigeria. I don’t think football is our problem.

Corruption is eating Nigerian deep, ever since 1960 anyway. If you are such a principled man, please leave the footballers alone and go after your likes-politicians who are looting and carrying away our national wealth.

Over 70% of Nigerians are living below the poverty level, please divert your energy away from the footballers and think of how you can reduce the percentage of Nigerians living under acceptable conditions of human existence.

There are loads of problems facing us in Nigeria. Football is the least of them. Go to Jos and live among the people for 1 weeks, try to understand their rotten mentalities and why they continue to kill one another.

Go to Borno and see the basis for the emergence of Boko Haram.

From East to West, from North to South, please go around and see what you can do to bring better the good life of the 50s and 60s. This country is dying, leave the footballers alone and focus on how to create employment opportunities, how to build good roads, how to make water flow into our homes and our to ensure that my children get quality education.

Above all, suspend that 10 billion naira that you are about to waste on a common party! Divert the fund into procurement of cancer testing machines for Nigerian decaying hospitals. Save a life today Mr Jonathan. The children are crying!

Related Story on BBC Africa SportsNigeria facing explusion from Fifa

Mad Politics and The Nigerian House of Thieves

Adeola Aderounmu

There was a serious fight in the Nigerian House of Representatives yesterday. The fight was about some 9 billion naira which some members like Bankole may have misappropriated. Bankole is the speaker of the house.

I am not going to discuss about the money per se since I don’t know if the allegations are true or false. I will discuss what I know.

I don’t know how easy it will be to find a Nigerian politician who is not a thief. What has actually separated Nigerian politicians ideologically is “how much they are able to steal”.

Nigerian Politicians as exemplified by this useless people in the house of representatives / assembly are mostly interested in the amount of money that they take home everyday.

These useless people fighting over money are the most paid politicians in the history of man. They sit down every other day talking rubbish and doing nothing, yet they go home with unbelievable sums of money at the end of their seat-warming sessions.

Since 1999 when Obasanjo was president, in how many ways have the actions and activities of the members of the house of assembly improved the lots of Nigerians? How have these spoilt and famous thieves contributed to the education, health and social well being of Nigerians?

Yet they still have the guts to openly display their madness and ineptitudes. They did that right in the presence of young school children who are visiting to observe proceedings in the house. Just imagine the legacy they are trying to pass on to the next generation!

I am so ashamed of these sets of Nigerians who exchange blows in the house of assembly simply because some members have stolen more money than them. Is this a case of bad riddance to good rubbish?

How are we going to solve our national problems when the people who are supposed to be lawmakers are fighting over the amount of money that they have been able or not able to steal?

Dimeji Bankole became the speaker when Bunmi Etteh was accused of stealing. But Dimeji is alleged to have stolen more money that Bunmi. Infact there are insinuations that Dimeji is likely the biggest thief in Nigerian politics today! If there is any iota of truth in these allegations, Dimeji then has turned out to be a disgrace to my generation.

The issues are not so simple. Nigerian politics is a disaster. In my book, the entrapment of a nation, I stated that Nigerian politics is a tragedy of modern era. It is so bad and so sad that it has now become a serious embarrassment to the black race. The conclusion is that Africans cannot successfully rule themselves or that the attempts by Africans to rule themselves have resulted to extreme failures-poverty, diseases, environmental disasters among many other man-made disasters.

Nigeria as represented by our politicians is a disgrace to all of us. We have failed to have decent elections and we have continued to breed thugs and nonentities as politicians. It is an hallmark of national failure. We don’t agree that Nigeria is a failed country but it is as a matter of fact.

And just wait. Mr. Jonathan is planning to spend 10 billion naira on October 1st 2010 to celebrate 50th anniversary of Nigeria. Again, wait. What is Nigeria celebrating? 50 years of failure? 50 years of internal slavery? Are we celebrating our short life expectancy, closed schools, bad roads, complete lack of electricity?

Nigerian politicians are fools! Big fools!

10 billion naira???

9 billion tore the house of thieves apart and 10 billion naira on celebration of failures!

I don’t know how the rest of you are thinking but from my point of view, that suggestion of 10 billion is insane and only an insane person can plan to celebrate his or her failures.

What about using half of that money to fix LUTH? What about using the other half to acquire cancer testing machine instead of these thoughtless politicians going abroad to do a test?

Our politicians are like aliens. They are probably not living among us.

The problems in Nigeria are going to increase if we don’t start telling these irresponsible politicians where our shoes are pinching.

Stop that celebration now!

Plan for the election next year, make it free and fair

Give us electricity; we are tired of living in the Stone Age

Give us water, we are tired of water borne diseases and lead poisoning

Give us good schools, we can’t send our children abroad (to Ghana, UK or US)

Bring cocoa and oil palm back to the West and the Groundnut pyramids to the North

Do something about the coal in the east and the steel wasting in Ajaokuta

Stop using international collaboration to destroy the Niger Delta

Give us good roads, we are tired of loosing loved ones on the road daily

Plan our environment, we are sick of wastes and pollution

Give us good health facilities, we want to live long

Stop stealing our monies, it is our commonwealth

Count our votes, we want to be part of the change to come

Do these things and much more!

If these things are in place or in progress by the time we are 51 years as a nation, I don’t think we will worry if you decide to spend 20billion on the anniversary. For now there is nothing to celebrate.

Tears and sorrows fill the land, stop wasting our money!

Stop fighting over our money.

Shame on Nigerian politicians!

To the rest of us, we must fight for our freedom. Freedom, social justice and all the good things that come with them will not be given to us on a platter of gold.

Super Eagles Are Not The Problem

Adeola Aderounmu

Many Nigerians like to reap from where they have not sown. Most often we forget the genesis of our national dilemma. The performance of the Super Eagles in South Africa is neither a shock nor a disappointment to a few of us.

The road to South Africa was rough and untidy. Many of us thought that Tunisia will qualify but on the last day of the qualifiers, Nigeria pulled the last string against Kenya while Mozambique defeated Tunisia.

The manner of our qualification reminded us of the mismanagement and lack of expertise in the Nigerian Football Federation. The last time we developed soccer from the grassroots’ level was probably when Westerhof was in charge.

We blame the Super Eagles because, quite correctly, they are professionals and they are paid to do the job of playing good football. Moreso, they are expected to play with their hearts like the North Koreans for example.

We must ask ourselves many questions.

What are the roles of the Ministry of Youth and Sports when it comes to development of Nigerian football?

What are the roles of the Nigerian Football Federation in discovering talented and gifted footballers especially after we have produced the likes of Okocha, Keshi, Oliseh, Finidi, Amokachi, Giant Uche, Siasia, Amuneka and Yekini among many other global names?

In general what are the national policy regarding the development of sports in Nigeria?

These are some of the questions; there are hundreds of other questions begging for answers.

We live at a time when we expect miraculous rewards from something we didn’t plan for. In football this will never happen because many nations take sports and football especially too seriously that those who failed to plan invariably planned to fail.

The year 1996 was an exceptional year for Nigerian football. We won the Olympics gold medal despite the fact that the preparation was, as usual, messy. We cannot always depend on luck or fire-brigade approach to accomplish success.

We should never crucify the super eagles. As a nation we have refused to gather all our positive energy towards effecting appropriate changes in the management of our national affairs.

The composition of the Super Eagles today, as I see it, is definitely not the best selection of Nigerian footballers. But if I am wrong, then Nigerian football is almost dead. It means either we have no new talents or we have failed to discover them.

In Nigeria today, the focus of several football fans is either on the English Premiership or La Liga. Some others fancy Serie A while others are focused on Euro Sports-2 for the Bundesliga. What is the Nigerian Football Federation doing regarding the promotion of the game in Nigeria?

Every weekend, you see representatives of NFF putting on jerseys to show their love and support for Arsenal, Man U and Chelsea. Even state governors and commissioners are not left out. We celebrate English Soccer and Nigerians have become die-hard followers of the game as played in Europe.

As this national madness progresses, Nigerian football continue to suffer both in the divisive boardrooms and on the patchy pitches. Yet we expect a miracle from South Africa in 2010. We forgot that Nigerian football reached its peak in 1994 and that we have gone to sleep ever since.

What we should have been doing since 1994 was to create a breeding ground for the replacements of all the Superstars mentioned above. We didn’t. We allowed our politicians to run our football. We don’t demonstrate against bad decisions. We don’t react to negative policies. We don’t identify with global growth of sports. We leave many things undone because in Nigeria we allow many abnormalities and yet expect positive outcomes.

It is the same mentality in other facets of our lives. We call it the Nigerian factor. We just allow things to pass without making positive amendments or appropriate corrections. We leave the holistic approach and chase subsets that cannot stand independently. Our sports or football in this case is the reflection of our collective failures as a nation. What is the difference between the performance of the Super Eagles and the fact that the standard of education of Nigeria has dropped consistently over the decades?

To get things right in our football, we have to get it right in the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development. To get it right in the Super Eagles, we really have to get it right in the NFF. To get it right in the NFF, we really have to ensure that those who are on board are seasoned sports professionals and sports administrators. Until then, the decline in the standard of our football will continue to take a nose dive.

Regarding the Super Eagles, there are a lot of issues at stake. What are the criteria used for getting players into the national team? I have spoken to at least 2 ex-internationals and their responses are very heartbreaking. In some circumstances Nigerian politicians, dictators and family members have influenced the selection of players into the national team. There are stories (from the past) of bribing of coaches to get players selected into the team.

What about the question of age? We blame the Eagles for being slow, tired and uninspired. But how did they make the team in the first place? Did they invite themselves to the team? We must begin to look closely at the ages of our players and stop inviting them to the senior national team when we realise that they cannot run or keep up with the pace at that level. While their active sojourn in national team last, we should respect them while expecting the best from them.

The coach, Nigerian or foreign, must be able to ascertain the level of the fitness of his team all the time. An unfit or uncommitted player has no business in the team because that is minus one already. It is also pertinent that the NFF does not interfere with the coach’s process of invitation and selection of players for the national team.

Obviously I cannot explain all that I have on my mind. For example what plans do we have for the Super Eagles player when they play hard and injure themselves while playing for Nigeria? What does the insurance policy say? Nigerian sports journalists owe us this obligation of explaining more and becoming more objective in their analyses of sports. If we want progress in our sports/ football, the brown-envelope syndrome must be abolished in the reporting of sports. That syndrome has destroyed enough of the Nigerian life.

Some Nigerians are expecting a miracle on Tuesday the 22nd of June while others have given up. Football is not a one day affair; our focus should be on the long-term implications of our outings in the Nations Cup played in Angola and the current World Cup in South Africa. If we have good memories we shouldn’t have forgotten Ghana 2008 so easily. We could have planned for today. But we didn’t.

With careful analyses of how we got to this point of disgrace in our football, we might be able to retrace our steps probably to Tunisia ’94 and make amends so that we can prepare better for the future.

Invariably, as Nigeria approaches 50th year as a nation, there are several things we need to put right. The status quo is a disaster for Africa and an embarrassment to the black race. We need a change we can believe in.

Nigerian delegates flocking to Super Eagles Training Camp

Adeola A

Nigerians will never fail to amuse you.

The team is hanging on a balance after dropping all 3 point to Argentina in its first match.

A coach was hired and he’s been paid millions of naira every month. He has a job to do and his job is tough.

But you see Nigerian delegates in South Africa at the Eagles training camp and you see a very rowdy pre-training and training session. Everybody has an idea and they don’t stop giving their suggestions on the pages of newspapers or through useless interviews in Nigeria and South Africa-they go ahead to invade the training sessions.

What do they want? I am sure some of them are posing for photographs with the players. Some of them are looking for handshake and other sorts of useless acknowledgement from the players and coach.

You don’t have to go to the training field to show your support for the Eagles. Get a Green-White-Green jersey and buy a vuvuzela to join the noise-making crowd.

Who are these delegates? What is their mission? Don’t they have any important assignment to do back in Nigeria?

There are serious problems with the Eagles. Add the problems of the delegates and what you get is a team that is on its way out on thurday evening.

Hopefully the delegate will stay behind to play the 3rd meaningless game IF that is what they want.

Give the Eagles a break and let them concentrate on the match with Greece. Too many cooks nko?

My take is simple, the better and more prepared team should always make progress while the unserious ones should pack their bags and go home.

Nigeria’s Rulers Relocate to South Africa.

By Adeola

Nigeria never ceases to sturn the world in many ways.

Mr. Goodluck Jonathan is in South Africa. He is there with 6 governors and some aides. President Jonathan was accompanied by the Governors of Ogun, Kwara, Borno, Rivers, Edo and Delta; the Ministers of Information, Foreign Affairs, Women Affairs and Sports, as well as Presidential aides.

There are reports that more than 60 Nigerian Senators are also in South Africa.

This country is a nation of clowns.

What are all these morons doing in South Africa when Nigeria is in dire need of sound leadership and serious revamping?

South Africa is hosting the Football World Cup because they prepared their nation for it. What are we preparing our country, Nigeria, for?

From the South, to the North, from the East to the West, there are issues begging for solutions and attentions and more than half of the rulers and conquerors of Nigeria are on jamboree to something that doesn’t concern them.

These wicked people remain selfish and evil. What are they doing in South Africa? Is Jonathan going to strike in the next game? Are the state governors going to play the third match against South Korea? What the h*** are they stupidly doing in SA?

Indiscipline of the highest order! You will never find in the whole world or in the history of mankind a group of people who are so thoughtless and aimless!

Nigeria is begging for attention and a way forward in every aspect of our lives including sports and football.

I don’t think these people gallivanting around know the seriousness of the nature of our national problems. Not to think of the millions of dollars that is now wasted on these unnecessary trips. The cost of these trips will be enough to change millions of lives in Nigeria. It will be enough to construct some roads and build modern schools in some communities.

Nigerian rulers are selfish, wicked and heartless and someone somewhere should order them to return to Nigeria with immediate effect. They should not draw up the money from these trips from national treasury.

But who will ensure or enforce these disciplinary measures when Jonathan himself chose this time to travel to SA? Nigeria, oh my beloved country..! what a wasting nation!

Nigeria, where is your glory?