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Fifty five Nigerian athletes set for camping ahead of  Africa U18 and U20 Championships



The Athletics Federation of Nigeria, AFN, has invited 55 athletes to camp for the final leg of preparations for the Africa U18 and U20 championships scheduled to hold later his month in Ndola, Zambia.

Majority of the athletes were picked after the AFN U18 and U20 trials held at the Ahmadu Bello stadium in Kaduna late last month.

Top of the list is 18 years old Ronke Ashabi who set a new Nigeria 3000m U20 record at the trials. Ashabi first set the record barely a year ago at the International School Sports Federation (ISF) held in Caen, France.

Also on the list of invited athletes are the reigning Nigeria 100m U20 record holder, Tima Godbless, Sule Rejoice Adijatu, Okpah Elo Blessing, Aladeloye Adetutu Funmilayo, Immaculate Daniel, Rosemary Etim and Grace Sule.

Others are Joseph Joy Ayomide, Kudoro Taiwo, Mustapha Ruqqayah Kemi, Akintoye Blessing Joy, Usenbor Osaretin Joy, Bright Ada Princess and Oshiokpu Grace. 


For the U20 men, Musa Kola Nurain, Ajayi Konyinsola Ismail, Adebisi Musbau, Unorji Kingsley, Toviho Enitan Olabode, Ajayi Kehinde, Ajayi Oluwabamidele, Badejo Emmanuel, Joshua Caleb, Okonye Precious, Charles Godfred Edward, Orekevwie Oghenetega, Iheakolam Joel and Habibu Salisu made the cut.

Faith Okwose will lead the charge for medals in the sprint for the U18 girls. The 17 year old won two silver medals in the 100 and 200m events behind Godbless at the National Sports Festival last December in Asaba, Delta state.

Others are Yakpobeyan Justina Tiana, Oyebode Stella Oluwaremilekun, Nwachukwu Chioma, Onyah Favour Onyinye, Saibu Yetunde Olayinka, Prestina Ochonogor, Ewa Peace, Irivi Precious, Djoma Fejiro Praise, Ofuoku Nyerhovwo, Ovedje Oke Gift and Kparika Victoria.

The U18 boys will have Isreal Okon Sunday, Daje Lucky, John Caleb, Samuel Ogazi, Olanrewaju Olawole Erioluwa, Francis James Musa,  Pam Paul James, Fiaku Goodluck,  Aninze Ifeanyi, Isaac Chukwuwike Miracle, Sadiq Zakariyya, Dickson Christain,  Badmus Gafar Atandaand Blessing Emmanuel. 

The technical director of the AFN, Samuel Onikeku, said that the camp will open on Tuesday April 11, 2023 at the High Perfromance Centre in Abuja.


Nigeria finished third (13 gold, six silver and 13 bronze medals) behind South Africa and Kenya in the last edition of the championships held at the Stade Félix Houphouët-Boigny in Abidjan, Ivory Coast.

Kunle Solaja is the author of landmark books on sports and journalism as well as being a multiple award-winning journalist and editor of long standing. He is easily Nigeria’s foremost soccer diarist and Africa's most capped FIFA World Cup journalist, having attended all FIFA World Cup finals from Italia ’90 to Qatar 2022. He was honoured at the Qatar 2022 World Cup by FIFA and AIPS.

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Committees set up for Gombe Inter Secondary Schools Competition



Gara Gombe’s firm firms agreement to upgrade Gombe University’s facilities

The chairman of the Main Organizing Committee of Gombe State Inter Secondary Schools Athletic Competition, Ahmed Shuaibu Gara Gombe has set up the supporting bodies for the maiden edition of the event.

  According to a press release, the Main Organizing Committee

 met at the Conference Hall of GOFCECON Hotel to prepare grounds for the hosting of the competition.

In a communique signed by Gara Gombe seven sub -committees were constituted as follows:

1.Technical, Ceremonial, Entertainment and Training


a) Zainab Ishaku Adamu – Ministry of Youth and sports. Chairman

b) Sani Nuhu Abdullahi – NAATO.  Member

c) Isa Dauda Zambuk – GWG.  Member

d) Prince Simon Ayuba – GWG. Secretary

2. Media and Publicity


a) Mal Haruna Zakari — GAA. Chairman

b) Uzor Odigbo — GWG. Member

c) Abraham Fashakin- North East Times. Member

d) Yakubu Maikudi – NTA Gombe.  Secretary

3. Accreditation and Security


a) ASP Jauro Usman – NPF.  Chairman

b) SP I Jerry Ketos Turawa- Gostec.  Member

c) ASC Ishaku Ibrahim – NCDC. Secretary 

4. Accommodation, Transportation and Logistics Committee 

a) Mal Ali Doho – Ministry of Education . Chairman


b) Mr Adamu Tanko – NAPPS.  Member

c) Obehi Kingspin -NAPPS.  Secretary

5. Medical and Welfare

a) Mohammed Abubakar Ahmed. Ministry of Health- Chairman

b) Red Cross – Member


c) Stephen Agboh – NAPPS. Secretary

6. General Duties

a) Ahmed Shuaibu Gara Gombe – CEO. GWG. Chairman

b) Mal Musa Garba – GAA Secretary

7. Secretariat  


a) Ibrahim Audu – Ministry of Education. Chairman

b) Mohammed Musa Baba – Northeast Times. Member

c) Haruna Isah Kalshingi – GWG.  Secretary.

He noted that capacity training would be compulsory for all secondary schools games masters prior to the competition.

In addition to the secondary schools in Gombe State, invitation will be extended to a private and public secondary schools across the six  states of the North East zone.


There will be free accommodation and feeding for the schools that registered for the invitational relay. The competition is  categorised to feature cadets, youths and 65  under 20 registered schools and approximately.

In all, it is approximated that 2,367 school students will be involved.

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Gara Gombe sets up committee for Gombe Inter Schools Athletics Championship



Former chairman of Gombe State Football Association, Ahmed Shuaibu Gara-Gombe has inaugurated the Main Organising Committee for the Gombe State Inter Secondary Schools Athletics Championship.

Last year at the primary schools edition, over a thousand pupils featured in what was the maiden edition sponsored by Ahmed Shuaibu-Gara Gombe who is also the chairman of the Gombe State Athletics Association. It was held at the Pantami Stadium.

The maiden competition had boys and girls from 47 schools in attendance. On Friday, in fulfilment of a pledge to raise the bar, the organising committee was set up  at the Gombe State University as part of private investment in sports development.

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Former 800m world champion Pierre-Ambroise Bosse banned for 16 months



France’s former 800m world champion Pierre-Ambroise Bosse has received a 16-month ban from the French Anti-Doping Agency after missing three drug tests in the space of nine months. Bosse announced he was quitting athletics late last year due to recurrent injuries.

The sanction comes after the 31-year-old missed three drug tests between September 2022 and June 2023. Bosse had announced his retirement in December, seven months before the Paris 2024 Olympics. He had received notifications of breaches three times, with the period coinciding with his efforts to return to a high-level athletic performance despite grappling with a hamstring injury.

The initial breach occurred on 25 September 2022, when an anti-doping controller arrived at his residence to conduct a test within the athlete’s scheduled time slot, but Bosse was not available. He told French news outlet L’Équipe: “I was one foot in training, one foot on holiday.”

Bosse, who was eliminated at semi-final stage of the Tokyo Olympics, was enduring a thigh problem at the time. Following surgery in December 2022, Bosse embarked on a race against time with the aspiration of competing in his fourth Olympic Games in Paris.

On 1 May 2023, authorities tried to contact him again, but were unable to reach him during a time when he was with family in Nantes. “I wasn’t worried at that time because I had forgotten the previous one and so I thought I only had one. At that moment, I gave up completely.”


Then a month later, a controller returned to his residence for another scheduled check, but the athlete was evidently absent. He was subsequently informed a few weeks later of a likely two-year suspension for failing to fulfill such obligations. 

Despite feeling dejected and shocked, Bosse attempted to defend himself by attributing the second violation to an issue with the absence of a doorbell.

“I made three mistakes, I accept. It’s true that I haven’t always been the best student when it comes to taking care of my location but, until then, it had never played any tricks on me. I know I should have been more serious but I would like to point out that I have been in the AFLD target group since 2012 and they have all my analyses.”

The 31-year-old was unable to recuperate following surgery on his right thigh last year and had been out of competition since April 2023.

Before his injury troubles he most notably secured fourth place in the 800m at the Rio Games back in 2016, and has yet to recapture the form that led to his crowning as the world champion over 800m in London in 2017. Bosse also got his hands on bronze at the European Championships in both 2012 and 2018.


Since leaving his beloved sport behind, the Frenchman has starred in two reality TV shows in his homeland and focussed on his association combining sport and ecology which he launched with his friend and former international team-mate Bryan Cantero.

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