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Author Topic: Jack Warner Leads Site Inspection In Nigeria  (Read 4837 times)

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Offline Zeppo

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Re: Jack Warner Leads Site Inspection In Nigeria
« Reply #30 on: June 15, 2009, 08:15:31 AM »
Nigerian rebels threaten FIFA junior World Cup

Armed militants in Nigeria's Niger Delta on Monday claimed more attacks against facilities run by US oil giant Chevron and warned FIFA against letting the country host the under-17 World Cup tournament.

The Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) in an email statement also threatened to extend its operations beyond Delta State to others in the oil-rich southern region.

MEND said they had started a massive fire that destroyed the Abiteye flow station and blew up two other Chevron facilities there early on Monday.

(continue)
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Offline kaliman2006

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Re: Jack Warner Leads Site Inspection In Nigeria
« Reply #31 on: June 15, 2009, 08:46:27 AM »
Or gorsh boy, ah hope no white supremacists readin' this thread.

Dis makin' black people look RELLLL bad!!!

Offline E-man

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Re: Jack Warner Leads Site Inspection In Nigeria
« Reply #32 on: June 15, 2009, 11:42:53 PM »
It makes certain Nigerian individuals look bad.

Anyway here is one opinion on pulling the tournament - like Warner glossed over the security concerns and focused on readiness of the facilities only.

U-17 World Cup Must Be Moved from Nigeria
By Paul Gardner


What on earth is FIFA waiting for? The reports out of Nigeria make it alarmingly clear that to stage the Under-17 World Cup there Oct. 24-Nov. 15, as currently scheduled, would be exposing the young players to considerable risk.

When a high-powered FIFA delegation visited Nigeria last month to assess how the preparations for the tournament were coming along, the party did not even visit one of the proposed venues. To quote from FIFA's official website Of May 21: "The venue of Warri could not be inspected over the past days due to security concerns in the vicinity of the city and the Delta State region in general."

Frankly, that ought to have been enough for FIFA to pull the plug right then. It did not do so. Instead of showing concern about the perils of guerilla warfare, the FIFA committee was more concerned that the Nigerians weren't looking good in getting their stadiums ready.

So the Nigerians were warned that they had to shape up and get those stadiums ready, or they might lose the tournament. Another FIFA delegation -- like the first one, led by Concacaf's Jack Warner -- will return within a week to see whether things are looking any better.

One is left gaping at the lack of concern here for the safety of the boys destined to play in this tournament. The security situation has gotten seriously worse. Yesterday came a statement from MEND -- the Movement for the Emancipation of Niger Delta -- threatening to widen its fight (it is seeking to gain local control of the region's substantial oil reserves) and it issued a direct threat to the soccer tournament. According to an AFP news report, MEND "took this opportunity to advise FIFA to have a rethink about Nigeria hosting the U-17 World Cup tournament at this time, as the safety of international players and visitors cannot be guaranteed due to the current unrest."

I cannot see how there can be any justification for prolonging the idea that the competition can be staged by Nigeria. The issue is no longer whether the stadiums are ready or not -- it is now a matter of lives being put at risk.

Of particular interest to the Americans, whose team is among the qualifiers, is that, according to MEND, its latest target for sabotage attacks were facilities owned by the American oil company Chevron.

Whether the games can then be moved elsewhere in time for the October/November dates, who knows. Such things have been done before. In 1991 this same tournament was switched from Peru, where there was fear of a cholera outbreak, to Italy. While in 1995, Nigeria was again a problem and the under-20 World Cup had to be moved to Qatar "at little more than a moment's notice" as then FIFA president Joao Havelange put it. While Concacaf, earlier this year, canceled the second half of its under-17 championship in Mexico because of fears of swine flu.

What threatens in Nigeria seems to me worse than any of those crises. Yet FIFA dawdles. It is possible that individual countries might feel compelled to withdraw their teams -- though as things stand at the moment, with Nigeria still the official site of the tournament, that would presumably bring down a heavy punishment from FIFA.

Beyond that are the families of the individual players, who should be fully apprised of the risks involved, and who can then decide for themselves whether they wish their sons to travel to Nigeria.

But for FIFA to allow things to reach that point would be unconscionable. This is a situation where FIFA needs to take the lead -- indeed, should already have done so -- by shifting the tournament.

Offline E-man

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Re: Jack Warner Leads Site Inspection In Nigeria
« Reply #33 on: September 23, 2009, 12:17:07 PM »
Fifa: 'Nigeria not ready yet'
By Matthew Kenyon (BBC Fast Track, Cairo)


Jack Warner says Nigeria are not fully ready to host the Under-17 World Cup

Fifa says organisers of next month's Under-17 World Cup in Nigeria must use Egypt's preparations for the under-20 event as a catalyst to help them get ready.

Football's world governing body at one stage threatened to move the tournament from Nigeria because of organisational difficulties.

In contrast they have praised planning for the Under-20 World Cup, which is due to kick-off on Thursday in Alexandria.

"This should serve as a catalyst to help Nigeria to be ready", Fifa vice-president Jack Warner said here on Wednesday.

"[Nigeria should] look at the organisation and look at the quality of the facilities.

"And therefore I hope that this will serve as a kind of stepping stone for Nigeria to be ready.

"As I speak to you now Nigeria is not yet fully ready. I hope that some of this (Egypt's planning) will pass off on to Nigeria," he said.

The under-20 showpiece kicks off with the hosts Egypt taking on Warner's native Trinidad and Tobago in the opening game.

Warner also insisted that the absence from Egypt of stars like Italy's Mario Balotelli, who has Ghanaian parents, would not hamper the youth tournament.

"In this competition you will see stars being created," he said.

"[lionel] Messi was not born in Barcelona, Messi was born from this kind of competition.

"Michael Owen, all these guys, they are made stars from this event."

Offline E-man

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Nigeria may fail to host
« Reply #34 on: October 03, 2009, 03:34:08 PM »
Nigeria may fail to host
By Olukayode Thomas (234next.com)


Football governing body, FIFA's vice president, Jack Warner should be reminded of his characterization by the British press each time he engages in double speak.

Warner, to the British press, is a man who speaks before engaging his brain. A hash verdict? Let the facts speak: Last week, shortly, before the Egypt 2009 FIFA U-20 Championship began, Warner told the world that Nigeria is not fully ready to host the Under-17 World Cup which begins in Abuja October 24. Warner then urged Nigeria to use Egypt's preparations for the under-20 event as a catalyst to help them get ready.

"This should serve as a catalyst to help Nigeria to be ready. Nigeria should look at the organization and look at the quality of the facilities. And therefore I hope that this will serve as a kind of stepping stone for Nigeria to be ready. As I speak to you now Nigeria is not yet fully ready. I hope that some of this (Egypt's planning) will pass off on to Nigeria," Warner told journalist in Alexandra, Egypt.

Last visit to Nigeria

Ironically, during his last visit to Nigeria about two months ago, he told the world that Nigeria is ready to host the world. Warner told reporters that after two major inspections, Nigeria has satisfied FIFA's requirements and everything is in place for the country to host the world later in the year. During the draws for the championship, Warner thanked Nigerians and Vice President, Goodluck Jonathan, for their determination and perseverance. "I know it has been difficult and I know that I have not been the easiest on you, but that is only because I believe in what this nation can do, and now you have done it," Warner was reported to have told journalists in Abuja.

So for Warner to last week deride Nigeria and Nigerians to the world as a nation that could not host cadets is a betrayal.

It also says a lot about his character. If he can tell the world that Nigeria is ready, and less than two months later, he is telling the world that we are not ready, will it not be right to say that the British press are apt with the description of Warner as man that talks before engaging his brain?

Away from Warner

But Warner's inconsistency apart, the truth is Nigeria is not ready to host the world.

While most of the stadia that will host the matches are near ready, the practice fields for seven of the eight centers are not ready, only Ijebu-Ode center has standard practice pitches that are as good as the match pitch.

So bad are some of the practice pitches that one of the participating countries, United Arab Emirates, threatened to pull out because of the poor state of Kano practice pitches.

Emirates team manager According to reports, the team manager of the United Arab Emirates team, Jamal Hassan, was taken aback when he saw the facilities at Kano. Hassan was reported to have threatened to withdraw his team from the tournament if the Gwagwarawa and Bayero University training pitches were not raised to world standards immediately. "How do they expect my youthful players to come and train on a pitch without grass? They want us to train on the field which cannot accommodate even a five-a-side game. This is horrible; I have never seen a thing like this all my life in football. Even the doping room is only comparable to a detention centre, there are no excuses, and we cannot stay here."

Organisers' response Emeka Odikpo, the General Manager Media for the LOC who we tried to speak with on many occasions without success, was reported to have said "We have challenges in Kano but some of these exaggerated condemnations are unfounded.

The training pitches are a major concern but there is ongoing work there to make things ready because we want them to be graced by, and appreciated by teams coming here. They (UAE) cannot pull out because it is a FIFA-organized tournament, besides FIFA looked at Kano and pronounced it fit to stage the tournament. Things that need to be done are minor which can be fixed in a matter of hours and not days. We will, of course, seek to address any concerns raised by the UAE officials and hope to work it out to reach a satisfactory conclusion for all."

Other areas of concern

Apart from the training pitches which are a major concern, the environment around the stadia is also a problem. Efforts by some of the host states to coax residents around the venue centers to beautify their houses have been met with resistance, while Kaduna's effort to get destitutes off the road has not succeeded.

A major aspect of any big championship is yet to start. Many of the centers are still waiting for Abuja to approve the list of volunteers. Many people believe merit did not play any role in the choice of volunteers as efforts were not made to include people from different socio-cultural backgrounds who could speak certain languages and help people from those countries.

Protocol is another area of concern, a few days to the championship; immigration officers are yet to train staff to receive visitors, ditto for officials of FAAN and other agencies at the airport. Nigerian policemen too are yet to be trained, nor cab drivers and hoteliers.

Funding as problem

One could go on and on listing important aspects of the championship that the LOC has either ignored or had not consider important enough.

Funding is also a problem facing the LOC. Government has not been releasing money to the organisers. NEXT Sports has it on good authority that officials cannot sign for more than one million naira.

Government sources said the reason why fund was not released to the LOC was to prevent a situation where money will be released and used for frivolous things, like it happened during the Abuja 2008 All Africa Games when the organizers spent N250 million on feeding paid staff.

"We will get our acts together in the last minute and host.Though it may be shambolic, things will not work like five fingers, but Nigeria will do better than Warner did in Trinidad and Tobago. There may be some hitches here and there, but Nigerians and the world will enjoy the atmosphere inside the stadia, there will be good football and good spectators, which what the championship is all about'' said a top official of the LOC on condition of anonymity.


The main pitch of the National stadium, Lagos is still undergoing refurbishment 20 days to the championships. Photo: FEMI ADEBESIN-KUTI
« Last Edit: October 03, 2009, 03:40:25 PM by E-man »

 

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