By Ekene Agbor, Osogbo
The Sports Writers Association of Nigeria, (SWAN) Osun State Chapter has commended Osun State Governor, Gboyega Oyetola for approving the payment of salaries of sports athletes, coaches and players that were suspended in July by the state ministry of youth and sports.
The association, while thanking the governor for heeding its advice asked him to investigate the alleged illegal deductions from the salaries he just approved.
Players, athletes, coaches in the two state-owned clubs (Osun United and Osun Babes) had accused the ministry of Youths and sports and the state Sports Council of being responsible for the deductions.
SWAN, in a release by the Acting Chairman, Mr. Tope Alabi and the Secretary, Timothy Agbor stated that Governor Oyetola has proved that he is a listening leader who understands the plight of sports men and women in the state and would not want to add to their challenges.
“We are happy that finally, Osun State Governor Gboyega Oyetola considered the advice given by SWAN, Osun Chapter in July this year that it was against the FIFA rule to stop salaries of players whose contracts are still valid. These players and athletes have confirmed the payment which has therefore justified the Association’s position on the matter.”
We similarly commend the Ministry of Sports and enjoin all parties to work together for the development of sports.”
We want to re affirm that Osun SWAN stands for the truth and will not be cowed to speak the truth always. The Association will not relent in its efforts at ensuring the desired growth and development of Osun Sports while athletes’ deserved welfare are not tampered with unjustly.”
While calling on the state government to thoroughly investigate the reason behind an alleged illegal deductions from the salaries paid to Osun athletes, coaches and players, Osun SWAN described the development as disheartening.
According to the Sports writers, the alleged deductions is an act of sabotage of Governor Oyetola’s efforts at puting smiles on the faces of sportsmen and women and could further demoralize the athletes and eventually affect their preparations for the major events coming up when the ban on sports is finally lifted by the Federal Government.
“It is disheartening to hear about deduction of salaries of athletes, coaches and players who have waited for 3 months without pay. We therefore call on the Governor to investigate the reason(s) behind this ugly and untoward action alleged to have been carried out by the Ministry of Youth and Sports and make necessary amends,” the release stated.