Nigerian football needs cleansing-Sen. Bukola Saraki

Channels Television  
Updated March 28, 2012

Senator Bukola Saraki has expressed displeasure, discontent and dismay over the poor state of Nigerian football, saying it’s corrupt and stinks and also in dire need of cleansing.

Saraki was speaking at the Teslim Balogun Stadium, Lagos during the final of the 2012 NNPC/Shell Cup

“We need to clean up Nigerian football because it is corrupt and stinks,” Saraki, who owns the only privately run club in the Nigeria Premier League, ABS FC, said.

“The NPL (board) should go and sort itself out. We can’t change the system from outside; we must do that from the inside. I am now a stakeholder and I am happy that I can contribute my quota to the development of football in Nigeria.”

The Senate Committee on Sports began its hearing on the dwindling fortunes of sports in the country on Monday and Saraki said he would address the issue in the upper chamber of the House.

“The game needs to be properly administered and we need to address the issues of violence and officiating. Our league matches must be entertaining. I am presenting a paper on my views about the country’s football at the senate hearing,” he added.

Saraki, who also established the Kwara Football Academy, said despite the recent success of ABS and KFA, he was not fulfilled.

He said, “I am not fulfilled because there is still a lot to do. We need sponsorship to sustain the level we are now. We have about four players from KFA in Europe and we also have some in the national teams.

“ABS is lucky to have an academy where they recruit youngsters and this should be emulated by other clubs. I hope the government encourages more private sector involvement in football. State governments can help but not as club owners.”