One-time captain of the national and West African cricket teams, Professor Jide Bademosi, has asked the Federal Government to stop the interference of politicians in the day-to-day running of sporting activities in the country.
Prof. Bademosi, who turned 80, stated this in his home at Ibadan early in the week .
He said it was not proper that people who know little or nothing about running sports were occupying crucial positions and taking important decisions that affect the everyday life of athletes in the country.
In an interview, which was part of events lined up to mark his 80th birthday, he said,
“They should get rid of politicians who want to interfere with the administration of sports in the country,”
Moving forward, the former Nigerian national cricket team captain said instead of politicians, government should
“Get people who are knowledgeable, who have a background in sports whether on academic or on practical basis.
“And more importantly, probity. If you cut away all those fringes like Senators, friends and all those who see every sporting event as a jamboree, where you pay one individual estacode that would be enough to pay the whole team, things would be better.”
He also remembered the work he put in place to ensure probity, when he was captain of the Oyo State cricket team.
“As captain of my team, I was supposed to be on $180 – $250 dollars a day, but as a player, I was supposed to be paid $6 dollars a day.
“Yet they wanted me to take more officials who would have been paid $180 dollars a day. We asked some of them, why don’t you let go part of your allowances, put it in the kitty, along with mine and we distributed it among the players.
“But that is on a personal basis as either a captain or a player.”
He said when the money was in excess, it was distributed among the players who were all happy to give their best.
“If we have such strict adherence to probity and justifiable administration of funds and those who know enough, not because they want to be there for the largesse, then there will be a future,” he remarked.
According to Vanguard, Bademosi praised the hard work of cricketers around the country, both old and young who have invested their time and resources in the development of the sport in the country, heaping praises on the present leadership of the Nigeria Cricket Federation.
“Luckily now Cricket has some hope, some future as the President, Professor Yahaya Ukwenya and Uyi Akpata with his banking and insurance background, have been able to attract the corporate community and well-meaning individuals to support the sport.”