Oluseye Ojo, Ibadan
Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde, yesterday said his administration will not cancel good policies initiated by the past administration, led by the Senator Abiola Ajimobi of the All Progressives Congress (APC), because government is a continuum.
He gave the promise when top officials, management, technical team, coaching crew, selected players and members of supporters’ club of Shooting Stars Sports Club (3SC) visited him in his office, at Agodi, Ibadan.
Makinde also promised his administration would not reverse good appointments made by the past administration, saying his government would not witch-hunt anybody.
The governor, however, vowed that his administration would do all that it takes to ensure the state-owned 3SC regains promotion from relegation to the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) by the end of the 2019/2020 football season that is expected to begin in September.
The club had failed to secure promotion ticket from the Nigerian National League (NNL) to the NPFL after it was defeated by Akwa Starlets 3-0 at the end of the 2018/2019 season of NNL in Asaba, Delta State in July.
The stakeholders that visited the governor included acting Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Sports, Mrs. Olubisi Adegoke; Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism, Dr. Olanrewaju Bashir; General Manager, Sports Council, Mr. Gboyega Makinde, Oyo State FA Chairman, Oba James Odeniran; 3SC General Manger, Mr. Rasheed Balogun; Team Manager, Mr. Dimeji Lawal; and 3SC Chief Coach, Mr. Edith Agoye.
The team manager, team captain, and chief coach, in their separate remarks, apologised to the government and the people of the state for their failure to secure the ticket, promising to make them happy in the new season.
Governor Makinde said: “But one thing I need to mention is the fact that we are not going to mix sports administration with politics. I don’t care where you belong politically. What I care about is that we have to work hard and allow 3SC to take its position in Nigeria football.
“I am not interested in the saying that it was an APC government that puts something in place. I said it during my campaign and also during my inauguration that whatever policies that are good that the past administration had put in place, we will take it and run with it. The same thing applies in this case. You should not be afraid of your job because of how you came in.
“We will make changes that can give us the desired result, but what is important is that the management and the players, you should be sure that we will motivate you and we will also properly fund the club. To whom much is given, much is also expected. We will give you the required resources, we will also give you the required attention.
“I have heard all that you had to say, your disappointment. I am also disappointed and some of you here, we have interacted before. Some of the challenges that you have mentioned, they are surmountable.
“We shouldn’t be playing at the National League level, we should be playing premiership in Nigeria and this is a club with a very rich history behind it. We just have to do whatever is necessary at this point in time to pick up the pieces and face the future or else we will keep on looking back. So, we want to stay focus and face the future. Shooting Stars will definitely get promoted this season.
“If it will take a miracle, it won’t be something new because you have a miracle governor on the seat and we have to make it happen and we have to plan for it. We are going to toy with several ideas, we are going to take on board what you have all said, “ the governor said.