Patrick Kelechi, Lagos
The Honourable Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare has tasked the newly elected Executive Committee of the Nigeria Football Federation(NFF) to improve all levels of football in the country.
Dare dropped this charge on Tuesday, in his office, at the Federal Secretariat, Abuja, when the NFF leadership paid him a courtesy visit.
The Minister said football is a national asset, a unifying force in Nigeria and the Federal Government, through his Ministry is interested in its growth and development.
His words: “I am happy to see that you have settled down to work as a team. I thank you for this courtesy visit and want to urge you to get down to business quickly to the enormous task ahead of you.
“You have to move the game in the right direction, where all the genuine stakeholders want it to go. You have to hold crucial and critical conversations before you take crucial decisions. Let the interest of the nation be the first and most important consideration in all you do.”
“As a new board, this is a new beginning. You have to move things to a higher level. If there are some areas of our football that are broken, then you must fix them and if some areas are unbroken, then don’t try to fix them.
“I urge you to improve all levels of our football, build strong national teams, well structured, efficiently run leagues by improving their governance structures.
“This new leadership must be aware and sensitive to the issues that will lead to the growth and development of our football and I promise that as a Ministry, we will continue to do our best to seek the right kind of funding for your programmes,” he added.
In his remarks, the Permanent Secretary, Alhaji Ismaila Abubakar congratulated the new board and charged them to work with the Ministry in developing the game.
The newly elected NFF President Ibrahim Musa Gusau thanked the Minister for his support and pledged, along with other members of his board, to work in the interest of the country.
Other members of the new NFF leadership on the visit were Ahmed Yusuf Fresh, Rabiu Inuwa, Aisha Falode, Margaret Icheen, Rt.Hon Essien Udofot and the General Secretary Dr Mohammed Sanusi.