Why we fixed National trials for Salah day -AFN

The Board of the Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN), has again, said that it is not undermining the Salah Day celebration in the country following a clash in date with the National Trials to select the nation’s athletes for both the African Senior Championships in Douala, Cameroon and the Paris Olympics.

This clarification becomes necessary following steps by some individuals to paint the AFN as a body that does not have regards for the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) in the country.

The Board of AFN had earlier explained the circumstances that led to the fixing of the National Trials for June 16-18 in Benin City, Edo State, and duly and sincerely apologized to all Muslim faithfuls in the country.

The AFN had earlier fixed June 26-28 for the National Trials, only for the Confederations of African Athletics (CAA) to announce a new date of June 21-26 for the African Senior Championships in Douala.

Since the AFN is using the National Trials to pick Nigerian athletes for the African Championships in Douala, Cameroon, there is the need to conclude the event in Benin City at least, two days before their departure since a majority of the athletes are foreign-based. As soon as the African Senior Championships end in Douala, the athletes will on July 1 embark on training tour overseas ahead of the Paris Olympics.

It is a crowded schedule for the AFN, and we plead with our beloved Muslim brothers and sisters, particularly the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) to bear with us.

We gathered that the AFN has put in place adequate measures for all our athletes, both Muslims and Christians to enjoy the Salah celebration before coming to the Stadium to compete.

Part of the arrangements made by the AFN is to skip the morning programme of the National Trials for all of us to celebrate the Salah Day. They have also bought some rams to be slaughtered on Salah Day for everyone to feel the impact of the celebration.

AFN has also made arrangements for food and drinks for all the athletes and officials to enjoy during the Salah Day celebration in Benin City.

The Federation again, apologise for any inconveniences this clash in date might cause our Muslem brothers and sisters.

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