Directives from President Muhammadu Buhari has instructed that no government official and members of the National Assembly must embark on a jamboree trip to Brazil for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games on the account of the government.
The order was passed down to the House of Representatives Committee on Sports Thursday, July 14, by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Youth and Sports,, Chinyeaka Ohaa who told the committee that the paucity of fund for the Games necessitated the presidential directive on the account of the government list.
Ohaa, who represented the Minister, Solomon Dalung, doubted the possibility of accommodating the officials and legislators among the Nigerian contingents to the Rio 2016 Olympics.
“We have been directed by Mr. President that anybody who does not have any business in the Rio Games should not be part of the contingent.
“As you are all aware, it has to do with the paucity of fund occasioned by the general economic situation in the country.”
The Reps committee members wondered how they would carry out their statutory oversight function of monitoring the Nigerian athletes.
The permanent secretary also revealed that there would be no chartered flight for the Nigerian athletes and the officials to the Olympics.
He also said that there were no basis to charter flight since many of the athletes and teams like the basketball are already outside the country.
Ohaa said it would be economical to make traveling arrangements with some airlines, therefore arrangements are underway with some airlines like Air France among others to lift those in Nigeria.
Meanwhile the Reps committee on sports had summoned the Minister of Finance, the Accountant-General of the Federation and the budget office to appear before it on Monday, July 18.
They are to brief the committee on the delay in release of fund in preparation for the Olympics.
The Minister has assured Nigerians of Team Nigeria’s capability to win at least five medals at the 2016 Olympics following the ministry’s request of additional N2 billion for the country’s participation in the Games. Where the ministry had an initial budget of N500 million for the Games.