The speaker of The House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, has sent an appeal to the national U23 team not to boycott its quarter final encounter against Denmark on Saturday, at the ongoing Rio 2016 Olympics.
Speaking against the backdrop of complaints of Team’s Head Coach, Samson Siaisia, Dogara said the players have refused to train and may boycott the tie due to unpaid allowances and wages.
He said the Dream Team should take patriotism as a fulcrum of their campaign, as he will personally do everything within his might to intervene in the matter.
He said the team with the likes of John Mikel Obi, Sadiq Umar, Oghenekaro Etebor and William Troost-Ekong has a very bright chance of repeating the feat of the Atlanta ’96 Dream Team led by the legendary Nwankwo Kanu and the team should be encouraged by all Nigerians.
“We will do all we can to ensure that all entitlements due to the team are paid, as we are already talking to relevant government agencies,” Dogara declared.
He noted that football being the major unifying factor in the country should be maximized by all for Nigeria’s continued joy and unity. “We will stop at nothing to ensure that we get the team to excel in Brazil and for Nigeria to recreate the watershed of Atlanta ’96.”
Dolapo is a writer and journalist who works with YNaija. He has interests in Christianity, politics and sports.