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Jonathan approves extra 1.6 billion naira for Eagles 2014 world cup preparation

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Super Eagles 2014 FIFA World Cup preparation and
participation has received a massive boost with the approval of N1.6
billion extra budgetary allocation to the team by the Federal
Government. THISDAY checks revealed Thursday that
President Goodluck Jonathan who is looking forward to a good
outing in Brazil from the senior national football team, the Super
Eagles, has approved the funds expected to be released any moment
from now.
A top government source in Abuja confirmed to THISDAY
yesterday that the money is mainly for the preparation and
participation of the Super Eagles at the Mundial in the South
American nation.
“The Federal Government is committed to the Super Eagles doing
well at the World Cup in Brazil that is why President Jonathan
has approved N1.6billion for the team. The money is different from
whatever the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) may have
appropriated for the team in their 2014 budget,” revealed the reliable
source Thursday.
Although the money is less than the N2.3billion the Presidential
Task Force on the last World Cup in South Africa had hope to
raise for a successful outing for the Super Eagles four years ago,
football officials who spoke with THISDAY on the Federal
Government’s magnanimity were full of praises for President
Jonathan.
“The president has demonstrated his love for the country’s senior
football team by approving the money. This will take the pressure
away from the National Sports Commission and NFF officials
who have been wondering how they were going to fund Eagles
preparations and participation in Brazil 2014,” observed the official
who would not want his name in print because of his post in the
nation’s sports sector.
Sports Minister, Malam Bolaji Abdullahi, is believed to have
played a part in getting the Presidency to approve the money for
the Eagles.
Abdullahi who had earlier voiced his resentment with setting up
another task force like the 2010 committee headed by Rivers State
Governor, Rotimi Amaechi, in the drive to raise funds for
Nigeria’s participation at the Brazil 2014, is likely to approach
Corporate Nigeria for their support to what the Federal
Government has provided for the Eagles. The left-over of the
funds raised by the Amaechi committee was used to fund the new
NFF secretariat in Abuja.
NFF had earlier tabled a budget of over N5billion for the busy
year 2014. It is far greater than the N1.2billion it received to run
2013 in which Nigeria won the Africa Cup of Nations after 19
years of waiting for the trophy and a fourth FIFA Under-17
World Cup title in the United Arab Emirates. Eagles also won the
bragging rights to the World Cup in Brazil same year.

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