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Saturday, June 13, 2020

Nigerian government 'not excited' about restarting Nigerian league and sporting activities - SGF Mustapha

As different sectors of the Nigerian economy gradually open after the lockdown caused by the Coronavirus pandemic, Boss Mustapha, the chairman of the Presidential Task Force on Covid-19 and Secretary to the federal government has revealed that the Federal Government is not interested in resumption of the Nigerian football league and other sporting activities as gatherings of over 20 people is still prohibited.

The Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) has been suspended since March due to the pandemic and the Buhari led government only eased lockdown recently in Lagos, Abuja and Ogun, while directing states to push their own Coronavirus response.

Mustapha says the governenment will allow the reopening of sporting activities at the right time.

“I’m not sure we are excited about opening sporting activities in our country, particularly soccer [football], which attracts large crowds,” Mustapha told the media on Friday.

“If our guidelines say large gatherings are banned and not to exceed 20 persons except places of work, I don’t see the excitement if we allow soccer to return to an empty stadium.

“A lot of European countries where these games have started are big businesses and they are doing it carefully and gradually.

“We are not excited about allowing sports to return, we will get there, but for now, we are concerned with the few activities allowed to reopen.

“We will continue to review the situation, know how we are faring, study the situation and know what next to do based on data, science and peculiarity of our environment.”

Plateau United currently lead the NPFL table with 49 points from 25 games

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