NIGERIA AND 2012 OLYMPICS: WHERE WILL THE MEDAL COME FROM?
The London 2012 Olympics is now on its tenth day and should be finishing by the week end. As at the end of day 9, China leads the pack with 30Golds, 17Silver and 14Bronze medals, a total haul of 61 medals; The US is not far behind with 28Golds, 14 Silver and 18 Bronze ( a total of 60 medals in its haul); and host country United Kingdom has garnered an impressive 16Golds, 11Silver and 10Bronze medals, making a total of 37 medals with more chances of collecting a few more Gold and lesser medals before the end.
So far South Africa leads the African challenge with 3 Gold and 1 Silver medal: most of which were acquired in the Swimming event. The Ethiopians and Kenyans have been picking the Gold and lesser medals since Athletics- mostly in the long distance races kicked in over the weekend; even Egypt have picked a medal in Fencing!
My worry however is that this may well turn out the worst Olympics for Nigeria in terms of medal haul- since I started monitoring the sport event from the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics. The way things are going we may not achieve any medal of any description, not even one Bronze, from what I can see in the 2012 games. The traditional sprint event which Nigeria usually dominate, at least in Africa, is now in the doldrums with no Nigerian male- of the three selected for the event, including Obinna Metu, Ogho Egwero and Peter Emelieze- making it to even the Semi-finals of the 100 Metres sprint event, not to talk of the Finals, won by Usain Bolt again, with 3 Jamaicans making the final list of the 100 metres event on Sunday 5th August, 2012.
This is an event in which Nigeria had the highest number of finalists, along with USA, at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics won eventually by UK’s Lingford Christie, with Davidson Ezinwa and Adeniken Olapade making that finals. In the women event, we were lucky enough to have Blessing Okagbere who was peaking at the right time, making her personal best of 10.92seconds in the Semi-finals of the Women’s 100metres race, to make it to the finals, which again presented 2 or 3 Jamaicans. Unfortunately Ms Okagbare- with all the features of a world beater- suffered from a poor start, (dwelling on the blocks, more than she did in the semis but could not catch up with a stronger field, unlike in the semis) and posted a time of 11.02seconds, a far tenth/hundred of a second worse than her semi-final timing.
Our boxers are been pummelled for fun, with most of them, if not all been taken out in the first round; Our Basket ball team got hammered by the US team in an Olympic record of humiliation and the worst margin of defeat ever suffered in Olympics basket ball history. As for the other “minor” sports in water, field and other events our team are either not registered or could not compete with the best of the world. Not even the traditional 4X100 metres relay is our men registered for the event not to talk of winning a medal. Our football teams- male or female- did not even qualify from the African qualifiers to the Olympics never mind winning a medal at the event proper. This is an event in which Nigeria (for the male specie) have won Gold (Atlanta 1996) and a silver in the last edition of 2008 Beijing Olympics.) What a disaster for a huge country as Nigeria is with so much potential sport men and women if properly tapped and managed!
If a tiny country like Jamaica can keep churning out world beaters in the sprint events- both male and female categories- Nigeria with the largest amalgam of black young men and women should not have any problems producing at least sprinters from the large pool to chose from, if the motivation, proper management and adequate preparations are put in place. You don’t just wait till Olympic year or few months to the Olympics before you start your knee jerk, fire fighting preparations and thinking you will achieve anything against more serious nations.
Like everything Nigeria, our sport is decaying and this decay cannot be ostracised from the general malaise of corruption plaguing the country in its entire facet. Sports are not adequately been funded as so much money is been misallocated to bureaucracy or outrightly stolen by those in the helm of affairs. Great Britain has shown that careful and proper investment in sports yield good results. Since 2006 when it got the offer to host the 2012 Olympics it started serious work on not just producing a first class facility for the events but also grooming and funding most areas of its sports including giving adequate grants to sportsmen to develop and excel themselves in selective sports areas in Cycling, Rowing, Equestrian, Fencing, Boxing and general Athletics. In other words preparations started over 6 years ago in all its ramifications and the result is not just the hitch-free hosting of all events at the London Olympics, but also its largest medal haul ever, including 16 Gold medals so far and counting. You cannot beat adequate preparation and funding.
With the massive unemployment in Nigeria I wonder why Nigeria cannot train and motivate more sportsmen to compete in Olympics with the best of the world every four year; I am surprised that Nigeria cannot produce Swimmers that can beat the world despite toddlers in Rivers, Cross River and Delta states swimming at the age of 4 years old. There are so many fresh rivers and most people in Bayelsa and Rivers state virtually live inside waters and know how to swim very well from very young age. It baffles me that we cannot produce Swimmers, Canoeist and other water-related sports persons at Olympics or All African games. There are so many water sports including synchronised swimming, Water Polo, Canoeing, Diving, Sailing and Rowing at the Olympics. Why can’t people from River abundant areas of Nigeria start and develop themselves in these water-based sports? I am sure most of the militants and kidnappers in Niger Delta areas could compete well if they are encouraged from early years in these sports. Sports do pay and government can use these to create more employment from the individuals to the medical teams, coaches and administrators in each of these areas. And what is more government can use these to earn more foreign exchange.
Sports administrators must start to look at areas where Nigeria could have competitive advantage and develop those areas of sports. Its no excuse to say we can’t afford it or we can’t be compared with Britain or the US because those are rich nations, but what about poor Jamaica turning out male and female sprinters for fun? Perhaps our sports administrators need to go study what Jamaica does to be world beaters in sprint races; I believe many Usain Bolts are wasting away in Nigeria, untapped, unrecognised and demotivated to perform sports to the highest levels..
By Tony Ishiekwene
Re: Nigeria And 2012 Olympics: Where Will The Medals Come From?
Bode Eluyera posted on 08-06-2012, 19:30:47 PM
OUTCOME OF OLYMPICS - WATER-PROOF EVIDENCE THAT NIGERIA IS A FAILED STATE!!!!
@Mr. Tony Ishiekwene
A big thank you for this enlightening, but, unfortunately, sad article. The truth, no matter how bitter, needs to be told - unless, ofcourse we want to continue deceiving ourselves that Nigeria is some GIANT OF AFRICA. As a matter of fact, it's worth mentioning that those Nigerians (our basketballers, sprinters etc) that even managed to qualify for the Olympics are based abroad and did so mainly on their own merits without any inputs whatsoever from the Federal government. The hens, as they say, have finally come to roost(or maybe 'to get roasted' for Ramadan) for Nigeria. I have said it a million times that NIGERIA IS A FAILED STATE, THE BIGGEST BANANA REPUBLIC IN THE WORLD, A VERY SIK AND DOOMED COUNTRY. The woeful performance of our sportsmen(not due to their fault) at the 2012 London Olympics is another WATER-PROOF evidence that I am 100% right about Nigeria being a failed state. To be honest, personally, I am not surprised about the result. I expected it. It has already become a trend. In the 2011 World Athletics Championship, Nigeria performed woefully too. NO SINGLE MEDAL WAS WON BY THE BIG FOR NOTHING GIANT OF AFRICA - while countries like Kenya, Ethiopia, South Africa, Jamaica, Barbados, etc carted away medals. WE are already used to praying for miracles without doing anything. But, you just can not grow grass and expect to harvest cocoa. We are reaping the bad fruits of our labour.
The poor sportsmen should not be blamed under any circumstances. They tried their best. Winning medals at the Olympics needs not only a lot of financing, but as well requires providing the necessary facilities for training, competent coaches, moral support, incentives and conducive enviroment. All the blame is on incompetent, corrupt, visionless and morally bankrupt Nigerian sports officials and federal government headed by a confused opportunist by name jonathan badluck. There are countless international sports events where the delegates/officials outnumber the sportsmen. These people are only after their pockets and not the glory of the country. Instead of training hard to represent the country in different sports, Boko Haram would rather murder innocent and armless Nigerians. That, I guess, is much easier and justifiable. This is one of the dearest prices that we are paying for the so called ONE NIGERIA - unfortunately!!!!
We must not are miss an historical moment that chance has offered us to get rid of the descendants of Usman Don Fodio for good! We must never allow the Hausa-Fulani to ride on our backs to Aso-rock. Our children and generations to come will never forgive us!!!
THERE WAS NEVER ONE NIGERIA!
THERE IS NO ONE NIGERIA NOW!
AND THERE WILL NEVER BE ONE NIGERIA IN THE NEXT 500 YEARS!
IT DIED COMPLETELY AND FINALLY WHEN CHIEF MOSHOOD ABIOLA, THE WINNER OF THE JUNE 12, 1992 PRESIDENTIAL ELECTIONS WAS MURDERED IN PRISON BY NORTHERN MILITARY OFFICERS (WITH THE COLLABORATION AND APPROVAL OF THE AMERICAN, BRITISH AND FRENCH GOVERNMENTS)!
AT LEAST 80% OF NIGERIA'S PROBLEMS WERE CAUSED BY THE NORTH AND MILITARY!
THE NORTH HAVE BECOME PERPETUAL PARASITE, BURDEN AND CLOGS IN THE WHEEL OF PROGRESS TO THE SOUTH!!!
THEREFORE, GETTING RID OF THE PARASITIC NORTH WILL AUTOMATICALLY RESOLVE 80% OF OUR PROBLEMS IN THE SOUTH!!!
TIME HAS PROVED THAT A HAUSA-FULANI MAN CAN NEVER DEFEND THE INTERESTS(RIGHTS, PROPERTIES AND LIVES) OF NDIGBO NEITHER INSIDE NOR OUTSIDE NIGERIA! LET US STOP DECEIVING OURSELVES!
ALL ONE NIGERIA HAS GIVEN THE SOUTH SO FAR IS TRAGEDY, PAIN, TEARS AND SORROW!!!
LET US SAVE OUR CHILDREN, GRANDCHILDREN AND GENERATIONS TO COME FROM THE NIGHMARE CALLED ONE NIGERIA BY ENDING THE FORCED RELATION IMPOSED ON US BY THE BRITISH FOR THEIR OWN SELFISH POLITICAL AND ECONOMIC INTERESTS!!!
IF WE FAIL TO DO SO NOW, THEY WILL NEVER FORGIVE US!!!
WE ALL NEED OUR OWN PRESIDENTS, MINISTERS, AMBASSADORS, EMBASSIES, POLICE AND ARMY TO DEFEND OUR RIGHTS, PROPERTIES, LIVES AND INTERESTS - NIGERIA IS NOT CAPABLE OF DOING THAT FOR 52 YEARS!!!
LET US SAVE NIGERIANS AND NOT NIGERIA FROM COMPLETE DESTRUCTION BY INCOMPETENT, CORRUPT, VISIONLESS AND MORALLY BANKRUPT OPPORTUNISTS LIKE JONATHAN BADLUCK AND HIS COLLEAGUES BY BREAKING UP NIGERIA NOW!!!
TOMORROW MAY BE TOO LATE!!!
IF YOU LOVE YOUR CHILDREN, RELATIVES, FRIENDS AND COLLEAGUES, DON'T EVER ALLOW THEM TO GO TO THE NORTH 'UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES' TO SERVE THE USELESS NYSC!! THEIR LIVES ARE MUCH MORE IMPORTANT!!! NIGERIA, A FAILED STATE, BIGGEST BANANA REPUBLIC IN THE WORLD, A VERY SICK AND DOOMED COUNTRY, IS NOT WORTH DYING FOR!!!
WE EXPECT ALL THE GOVERNORS AND HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF SOUTHERN STATES TO PASS A LAW THAT WILL PROHIBIT/BAN THEIR INDEGINES FROM GOING TO THE NORTH TO SERVE AS CORPERS IRRESPECTIVE OF WHATEVER GUARANTEE THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT AND NORTHERN GOVERNORS MIGHT MAKE!!! DON'T EVER TRUST THESE PEOPLE OR ENTRUST YOUR LIVES TO THEM!!! THEY ARE NOT RELIABLE!!!
JONATHAN BADLUCK, STELLA ODUA, ALLISON MADUEKE HAVE MURDERED THEM AND KILLED THEIR DREAMS!!!! WHAT A
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