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Fund Threatens Nigeria’s Participation In African Taekwondo Championship

Chika Chukwumerije | Fund Threatens Nigeria’s Participation In African Taekwondo Championship
Chika Chukwumerije

The championship is scheduled to take place from May 5 to May 8 in Tunisia.

Chukwumerije in Abuja said that it was unfortunate that the private sector was not investing in “what is clearly Africa’s fastest growing Olympic sport“.

“Obviously it’s a highly ranked tournament, so the national team hopefully will be there; we will push for it.

“I think we are good to go; we know what to do. Our only challenge is fund; the private industry is not investing in what is clearly Africa’s fastest growing Olympic sport.

“Any day in time if I call a camp within 10 days, you get between 500 and 700 people coming and that is huge.

“Most schools in Nigeria are adopting taekwondo as a default sporting programme and I think it’s something investors can tie into.’’

Chukwumerije is also one of the eight athletes preparing for the championship in Tunisia.

The coach-athlete urged the National Sports Commission (NSC) to assist the country’s contingent to ensure that Nigeria did not lose the opportunity to win Olympic points it had been hoping for.

“We hope we go. We are going for points. We are registered for it, so the logistics hopefully you have the secretariat take care of it if the NSC supports it.

“In the end it boils down to: is the ticket there? The accommodation has it been paid for, and all that.

“So, we are competing in 42 other sports; we hope that they truly see that we definitely will do well at Rio and they can support this; every country will be there.

“For instance in my weight class, in the top 20 in the world, we have five Africans; so, this African championship is for me more difficult than world championship.“

Jamilu Mohammed, Africa’s gold medalist and Uche Chukwumerije, Africa’s Middleweight champion, are among the athletes preparing for the championship. (NAN)

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