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Nigeria U-17 World Cup in doubt

Discussion in 'Sports' started by BAK, Oct 23, 2008.

  1. BAK

    BAK JF-Expert Member

    Oct 23, 2008
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    Nigeria U-17 World Cup in doubt
    BBC Sports

    Umaru Yar'Adua said his government had other funding priorities
    Nigeria may be forced to quit as hosts of the 2009 Under-17 World Cup, after the country's government said it cannot afford to provide the money needed to stage the competition.

    The Nigerian government decided that the $30 million required was not seen as a priority.

    Nigeria President Umaru Yar'Adua told his cabinet last week that he is not convinced that hosting the tournament in November of next year will help develop the country's sports.

    "It is clear that hosting the competition, as prestigious as it may appear, is not a priority of government and the president has made it clear he would not fund any project that is not a priority," a government official said.

    Yar'Adua said Nigeria faced more pressing budgetary needs and told the Local Organising Committee (LOC) for the tournament to turn to the private sector for most of its funding.

    Nigerian officials, including Sports Minister Hassan Gimba, are already in Zurich to discuss the hosting of the biennial tournament with Fifa.

    Fifa had praised Nigeria's preparations for the tournament in June after its last inspection visit.

    However, the issue of funding had not been in doubt at the time.

    LOC official Tijani Ahmed Shuaibu said his organisation would discuss the budget with Fifa.

    "Most international competitions run on money from private companies with the government only providing the infrastructure like stadiums. Nigeria's case should not be different," said Shuaibu.