By Debo Oshundun
Lagos – Youth and Sports Minister, Solomon Dalong, has directed all former presidents of national sports federations to hand-over to their successors or face litigation.
The minister’s spokesperson, Nneka Anibeze, said in a statement that Dalong gave the directive in Abuja during a meeting with the federations’ presidents and the Nigeria Olympics Committee (NOC).
Dalung urged the NOC to coordinate the official handover process of former boards to the new boards to ensure continuity and smooth transition.
“The newly elected presidents must write officially to former presidents and request for a formal handover.
“Failure to handover within the provided period will activate the law; if you refuse to handover government property in your custody, you have invited the law to take over.
“No individual or group of people is greater than the constitution or the machinery of government as represented by the Federal Government in this situation,’’ he said.
The minister condemned the operation of secret accounts by some former sports federation presidents.
“ The practice negates the existing government policy of Treasury Single Account (TSA).
“Most of the former presidents are still running the federation’s accounts and still collecting grants.
“All accounts of federations must be disclosed. There are accounts of federations that are unknown even to the new presidents but are known to individuals.
“This is not an allegation, this exists. All those accounts must be made public.
“The Ministry will not hesitate to invite the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission and other relevant agencies to deal with federations operating multiple accounts.
“Nobody has the right to receive any grant from anywhere and keep same in any account.
“That is a violation of the TSA rule. Once it is established, Mr Magu will be invited to help evaluate the magnitude.
“If established, you’ll be given a presidential escort to Kuje Prison,’’ Dalong warned. (NAN)