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Sports Festival: Oyo, Taraba athletes barred over COVID-19

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Athletes parade at National Sports Festival

Officials and athletes from Oyo and Taraba states have been disqualified from participating in the National Sports Festival holding in Benin City, Edo state over failure to produce their Covid-19 test results.

Chairman of the local organising committee, Mr. Philip Shaibu, disclosed this on Saturday at UNIBEN sports complex shortly after inspecting the Covid-19 screening centre.

Shaibu had on Sunday, March 21, while reeling out guidelines for festival tagged Edo 2020, announced that athletes and officials are to present certificates and documentation of Covid-19 tests and vaccination before they can be admitted into the games villages in the state.

He said that the guidelines were agreed for the National Sports Festival, following the meeting between the Federal Ministry of Youths and Sports Development and the Edo state government.

According to him, “LOC has decided that all athletes/officials from the 35 states and the FCT, participating in the National Sports Festival must take Covid-19 tests 72 hours before arrival for the tournament.

“All athletes/officials are to take Covid-19 vaccine at least 12 days before arrival for the tournament.

“Athletes/officials are to present certificates and documentation of Covid-19 tests and vaccination before they can be admitted into the games villages in the state.”

The Oyo and Taraba states representatives were however disappointed when they arrived at the Games Village, but were denied entrance over failure to comply with the Covid-19 protocol as directed by the LOC.

It was however gathered that officials of the two states are appealing to the LOC to rescind their decision, to enable them participate in the sporting Fiesta.

As at the time of filing this rep, it was not clear if the LOC will shift grounds to accommodate the athlete.

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