By Okey Ndibe
Professor Okey Ndibe
Nigeria went to Rio, Brazil and, as the world looked on, gave a thoroughly embarrassing account of itself.
Don’t get me wrong: this swipe is not targeted at the heroic men and women who represented us in a variety of events. They, above all, were the primary victims of their country’s show of shame. No right thinking person would knock the competitors who represented the rest of us in Rio. In fact, for agreeing at all to wear Nigeria’s colors and hoist the country’s flag, these athletes deserve our collective gratitude.
Thank goodness that Nigeria’s exquisite soccer team played a (mostly) scintillating game against Honduras—and earned a bronze medal in the Rio Olympics. That bronze—Nigeria’s sole medal in the 2016 Olympics—marked a rare triumph in our country’s otherwise disastrous outing in Rio.
Those who run Nigeria are notorious for failing at basic tasks, but easily excelling at those affairs that should demand a whole lot of work. The Olympics are held every four years; there is no surprise there. Nigeria’s sports officials had four years to ensure that their country’s athletes and sports ambassadors received sound training and the best equipment. They had four years to book flights for these athletes and to make arrangements for their hotels or other accommodation.
Guess what? Nigerian officials made a mess of every elementary expectation. At the opening ceremony, members of the Nigerian contingent had to wear their tracksuits because their official attire—which was meant to showcase something of their country’s identity—did not make it in Brazil in time.
It got worse. Nigeria’s football players were stranded in Atlanta, back in the US, for more than two days. These gallant players finally made it into Brazil a few hours before their first game against the Japanese team. Failed by …Read More
Source:: PM Newspaper