Sports Ministry intervenes in Chess Federation crisis

The Federal Ministry of Sports has intervened in the crisis rocking the Nigeria Chess Federation.

The crisis took another twist after the Chess Players Association of Nigeria sent a petition to the sports ministry alleging that the NCF president Olalekemi Adeyemi illegally submitted the federation’s constitution to the ministry.

CPAN, headed by Ayokunmi Ajayi, wrote a protest letter to the ministry on June 10, 2019 to express their grievances and request for a solution.

The petition, which was addressed to Adesola Olusade, Permanent Secretry, Ministry of Sports, read, “It has come to the attention of the Chess Players’ Association of Nigeria that in line with the Federal Government’s directive, the constitution for governing chess in Nigeria has been submitted to the sports ministry for adoption.

“However, sir, we urgently bring to your attention that the directed and legal prerequisites of a Federation Congress in which relevant stakeholders were to be present to deliberate on a drafted constitution, which was then to be ratified by the federation’s board were not upheld before the submission of the said constitution.

In a chat with our correspondent, the CPAN president said, “the ministry has acknowledged the letter.”

A top sports ministry official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said, “We are working towards ending the crisis in the chess federation.”

The NCF board is expected to hold a meeting for the first time since the board’s inauguration in 2017 but the federation’s media officer, SalemFly Salem, debunked rumours that the meeting was convened because of CPAN’s petition.

He said, “The Annual General Meeting has nothing to do with whatever anyone is doing. It is a programme that has been lined up.”

The federation have their time or schedule of when they want to lay out their programmed.”

On the constitution submitted by Adeyemi to the ministry, Salem added, “There is an executive; it’s the board that decides what to do and not the players. There is a federation that championed the rules. The executive does what it should be doing and not just the president. The president is not the only person in the executive; everybody has their category and does what they are expected to do. They are chess players and there is an authority.”


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