Aftermath of Lift of Ban: MTN, Super Sports Partner Nigeria Rugby Football Federation

The President, of Nigeria Rugby Football Federation (NRFF) Ademola Are, has said that the federation is in partnership with South African multinational mobile telecommunications company, MTN and Super Sports to develop the game in Nigeria, BSNSports.com.ng can report.

Speaking exclusively with BSN Sports on Monday, the former Director of Grassroots Sports said, “Already, I have the good news that MTN and Super Sports have agreed to partner with us through our agent. We are also looking at grassroots development programmes for rugby through various sports offices under the Ministry of Sports. We will start by having a women’s championship. This might take a little bit of time as the programmes may start in 2023 because of the financial support that we are expecting from our sponsors.

He revealed efforts that led to the World rugby governing body lifting of the ban on Nigeria.

“It was welcoming and well-deserved positive news for rugby families in Nigeria. It is not also not surprising because of the efforts that were put in by the federation, the Ministry of Sports, and the NOC to ensure that Nigeria finally left off the hook. There were processes that needed to be followed particularly the approval of the constitution for rugby in Nigeria. And also we needed to fill out forms and do certain things for them to really lift the ban.

“This will give us leverages to start doing what we are expected to do. As a body, the lifting of the ban was just a major achievement for us and we have our programmes already outlined and see how we can take care of them one after the other. We have been able to sign a marketing agreement with a South African consortium and they are really working on many things.

“The Ministry has been magnanimous and because they have so many federations to take care of. We don’t want to put a lot of burden on the ministry. We are sure that we are going to hit the ground running very soon.” He concluded.

The World Rugby council suspended the ban placed on the Nigeria Rugby Football Federation (NRFF) last year, due to what it termed as interference by the Federal government.

According to reports, the World Rugby body reinstated the country as a full member, following a unanimous vote by the World Rugby council.

It would be recalled that Rugby Africa last year banned Nigeria from taking part in international Rugby activities last year, following the termination of the NRFF’s board and other sports federations by the sports ministry and setting up a caretaker committee. And the decision was labelled interference by the Africa Rugby body.

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