By Jacob Ajom
Primate Babatunde Elijah Ayodele of INRI Evangelical Spiritual Church, based in Oke-Afa, Isolo, Lagos, has commended President Muhammadu Buhari over the appointment of Daniel Amokachi as his SA on Sports, saying his experience as a former player and coach was necessary to lift Nigerian sports.
The cleric said: “I thank the President for what he has done and I congratulate Daniel Amokachi and advise him to give appropriate advice to Mr President.
“He should not concentrate on football alone, but pay attention to all sports in Nigeria.”
Primate Ayodele called on stakeholders in sports to support the minister of Sports and Youth Development, Sunday Dare, in his quest to chart a new course for Nigerian sports.
Speaking in his office with Vanguard Sports, Primate Ayodele said: “Although Mr Dare may not have a robust background in sports, he is doing a great job at the moment.
“At times, one may find himself in a new place, but one’s personality and experience could make one fit in.”
He said Dare needs the support and goodwill of all stakeholders to succeed because he had a winning aura around him.
“If he remains Minister of Sports till the next AFCON in Cameroon, Nigeria could lift the trophy but the Super Eagles must be warned against underrating opponents at the tournament,” he said, and added that the Super Eagles needed spiritual cleansing.
He took a swipe at the NFF for the failure of the various age-group teams like the U-17, U-20 and U-23 male and female teams from qualifying for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and said the federation needed new leadership to reposition Nigerian football.
His words: “There must be no sentiments in the election of a new NFF President. There should not be godfatherism and I believe an ex-footballer can do a better job as NFF President.”
He tasked the NFF on the crisis in Nigerian Football Supporters Club and concluded that the polarisation of the club was not good for Nigerian football.
Primate Ayodele presented a compendium of over 1,000 of his predictions that came to pass, including the collapse and death of a player, the shakeup in CAF and the polarisation of the Sports Writers Association of Nigeria, SWAN, among others.
“They are all there in my book of predictions for the 2019/20,” he said.