The Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN) disclosed that it will organise three U-13 athletics competitions across three different centres in Nigeria in one of the resolutions that was reached at its virtual executive board meeting, held on Saturday, and was presided over by Tafida Gadzama, its First Vice President.
The competition, however, will be funded by World Athletics under its Grant for Growth Under 13 National Athletics Competition project in Abuja, Kaduna and Port-Harcourt or Enugu.
In other news, the AFN executive board also resorted to diving into its finances, income and expenditure records from January 2023 which will be the only time in over 20 years the federation’s executive board will probe its activities to ensure transparency and accountability.
The executive board has appointed a five-member committee led by the First Vice President, Tafida Gadzama, Mrs. Maria Worphil, Mr. Victor Okorie, Mr. Samuel Onikeku and Mr. Dare Esan to resolve to look into the books of the federation since the start of this administration which includes its income and expenditure and report their findings to the executive board.
Regards to the disreputable reports making rounds in the media about athletes not getting paid by road race organizers in Nigeria, the board has ordered the road race committee to come up with a road running manual to assist road race organisers in getting started or to help produce quality events of an international standard and define the criteria that must be met in organizing a road running event in Nigeria.
In other decisions reached at the meeting, the AFN board resolved to outline a Safeguarding Policy in compliance with World Athletics’ demand, that is, to set expectations as well as define the specific roles and responsibilities of the federation in protecting athletes.
Most importantly, it gives confidence and trust to the athletes about the feasible structures and processes in place to report safeguarding abuse.
The board also agreed to appoint a safeguarding officer to ensure that the implementation of the policy is carefully carried out without further delay to make athletes feel safe and supported.
Meanwhile, the board also deliberated on the performance of Team Nigeria at the 19th World Athletics Championships which was held in Budapest, Hungary between August 19 and 27, 2023 and resolved that future participation of athletes in the championships and other subsequent international competitions will not be limited to just securing the entry standard set by World Athletics.
However, as the case may be, the AFN also mandated its Technical Committee to find a way to resolve other factors and present them to the board for approval.