The Chief Executive Officer of HotSports Group, Taye Ige has raised concerns over the current NFF crisis and it prospect of derailing the country’s chance of winning gold at the Rio Olympics.
Despite the African champions were drawn alongside Colombia, Sweden and Japan in Group B of the men’s football event of the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, Brazil, the sports marketer is worried the country’s may not go far due to the internal wrangling and poor preparations.
“To say the least, the preparation has been chaotic. With the sports ministry that is saddled with the responsibility of preparing our athletes completely engrossed with NFF’s dog-fight, federations are on their own as far as preparations are concerned. Again, with the DG – Alhaji (Al-Hassan) Yakmut, who was directly in-charge in 2012 removed, a vacuum seems to have been created.
“We are going down the same lane we have travelled over the decades preparing for the Olympics. The lackadaisical style in our preparations is also affecting the interests of Nigerians. It is quite a challenge marketing the games. We do hope that as the Games draw closer, more people will show interest about being in Rio de Janeiro for the event.
“But it does also look like the downturn of the Naira could affect the plans of Nigerians desirous of watching the Games.
“It does seem so, unfortunately. With a US dollar exchanging for as much as N300, only the very few can afford to go to Brazil to watch the Games. Equally the World Cup experience has shown that Brazil is very expensive. But we still some period left before the games commences; we are hoping that there could be some improvement in the economy and that interest of Nigerians would also increase.