By Emmanuel Ujah
The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has said that Nigerian athletes shouldn’t participate in the on-going Islamic Solidarity Sports Federation in Azerbaijan.
CAN, in a letter by its Secretary General, Mr. Musa Asake, said that the participation of Nigeria in the event was illegal, since Nigeria was a secular state.
The letter dated May 10, 2017 reads in part:
“It has come to our notice that the Islamic Solidarity Sports Federation is organising its 4th game titled BAKU 2017 in Azerbaijan between May 12 – 22 2017.
“Of concern to us is the information that Nigeria is listed as one of the 57 countries participating in the games.
“Nigeria is one of the 57 countries participating in the sports fiesta tagged, ‘BAKU 2017.’
“The organisers confirmed that the games are strictly for Islamic countries because the ‘‘ISSF is a section of the Organisation of the Islamic Cooperation.
“We request that this claim and Nigeria’s participation should be investigated because, including Nigeria in an International engagement based purely on religion violates the spirit and letter of section 10 of the 1999 constitution (as amended).
The letter with the title, “Illegal Participation of Nigeria at the Islamic Solidarity Sports Federation, BAKU 2017”, was addressed to the Acting President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo.
It was copied to the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki; and Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (OSGF).