30 November 2012

Nigeria: Para-Athletes Fury Averted As Osun Hold Gombe to Draw in Football

Lagos — The football match between Osun and Gombe at the ongoing 18th National Sports in Lagos was on Thursday disrupted for minutes by para-athletes at the Yaba College of Technology (YABATECH).

The para-athletes, numbering about 20, had wanted to join their colleagues already training at the back of the football pitch when they were stopped by security men that a match was ongoing.

The security officials forcefully prevented the para-athletes from walking on the sidelines of the pitch on the ground that a match was still on.

The directive did not go down well with the para-athletes who then engaged the security men in free-for-all.

The fight escalated when the para-athletes who were also part of the festival increased in their number alleging discrimination.

The match was about 15 minutes to end but the spectators' attention was momentarily diverted to the fight and which had also temporarily stalled the match proceedings.

NAN reports that with the intervention of some MOC member of the festival present at the venue, the match continued but ended a barren draw.

The match commissioner, Mrs Buhari Jamila, however, condemned the attitude of the security saying their behaviour was in excess.

"The security men did not have an idea of what they were sent to do. I will not call it over zealousness; it is a clear case of not knowing what there are here for.

"No, the para-athletes training at the back of the pitch did not affect the match, but the security men should be properly briefed," she advised.

Team Gombe had earlier drew its first with Enugu while Team Osun had won their first match 2-1 against Kaduna.


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