The House of Representatives has resolved to intervene in the dispute between the female national football team, the Super Falcons and the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), ahead of the 2023 Women’s World Cup.
This followed the adoption of a motion by Rep. Olumide Osoba (APC-Ogun) at plenary on Wednesday.
Presenting the motion, Osoba said that there was a need for necessary action to prevent the planned boycott of the FIFA World Cup by the female national team, the Falcons.
“Concerned about the potential embarrassment and negative impact on Nigeria’s reputation if the planned protest and boycott proceeds without intervention, as witnessed in previous incidents involving the national female basketball team.
“There are historical instances of non-payment of salaries, allowances, and bonuses, as well as the arbitrary dismissal of players within the Nigerian women’s sports teams.
“The situation is not only embarrassing but also raises serious questions about the treatment of athletes and the overall management of sports in our country.
“Aware that the Super Falcons have threatened to boycott their opening game on July 21, resulting in potential embarrassment for the government and jeopardising Nigeria’s participation in the tournament,” he said.
Osoba said that the commitment of the footballers was unquestionable as they had represented Nigeria with honour and achieved remarkable success in international competitions.
The lawmaker said that it was sad that the footballers had been neglected by the authorities leading to low morale.
The House urged the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) to pay the outstanding match bonuses and allowances to the players, ahead of the tournament.
In his ruling, Speaker Tajudeen Abbas urged the Sports Committee, when inaugurated to invite the NFF and relevant stakeholders to provide a detailed report on the steps taken to resolve the dispute and ensure hitch-free participation of the team at the 2023 Women’s World Cup.