Elite players have dumped Lagos state ahead of the 2020 National Sports Festival in March. www.aclsports.com gathered that the players left due to non payments of monthly grants and issues of negligence of sports men and women by the state government.
Top men and women players have migrated to South East, South South and North West states in the country.
A player (name withheld) told www.aclsports.com Lagos state government is only playing to the gallery when it comes to the welfare of athletes on their payroll.
He said, “I cannot continue to represent a state that does not care about the welfare and concern of the athletes. Till date, the cash prizes of those who won medals for Lagos state at the 2018 National Sports Festival have not been given to them.
“I have moved to a South South state who showed interest to me last year and thank God I was able to meet the section of the National Sports Festival Constitution which states that an athlete must have spent up to a year at the state he/she wants to represent”.
Another athlete revealed that some top officials have been threatening other players who ditch the state despite not paying the monthly enumerations.
She said, “Some of my fellow athletes participating in other sports have been receiving disturbing call and they are scared. The states they are representing have promised that nothing will happen to them and they will feature at the 2020 National Sports Festival in Edo state”.
On the issue grants payments Chairman of the Lagos State Sports Commission Mr Sola Aiyepeku said “We already started paying athletes in the state this week. We are constrained to work within the structures of the state and can only make these payments when our allocation gets to the Commission”.