Again, Okorodudu begs sports ministry for 9 months salary arrears

Jerry Okorodudu

A national boxing coach, Jerry Okorodudu, is once again begging the Federal Ministry of Sports and Youth Development to pay the backlog of his salary.

This time, Okorodudu, Nigeria’s boxer in the 1994 Los Angeles Olympic Games, U.S., says he is being owed nine months’ salary arrears by the sports ministry without any explanation.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that Okorodudu, a 1982 Brisbane Commonwealth Games bronze medallist had in 2016 gone cap in hands begging the same ministry to pay him 14 months’ salary arrears.

The matter was later resolved and he got his salary arrears then.

Okorodudu told NAN in Lagos on Monday the situation had deprived him of providing for his family.

“For the past nine months, the sports ministry is owing me salaries and I don’t know the reason why I have not been paid,’’ said the national Light Middle­weight champion for many years in the amateur category who didn’t lose a fight.

“I have travelled to Abuja and also written letters to the ministry but nothing is forthcoming; I can no longer feed my family and cater for my children’s education.

“A similar thing happened in 2016 where I petitioned the ministry and the court ordered them to pay me the 14 months salaries they owed me as at then,” he said.

The former boxer, who also won two gold medals at the African Championship in 1982, said that he had been treated badly in spite of his contributions and sacrifices for the country.

“My pensionable job in the ministry was changed to a contract; the Nigeria Boxing Federation has also side-lined me by removing me from every competition.

“I represented this country well as an athlete and a coach, but it is a pity that this is happening to me and other former sportsmen and women in the country,” he said.

Okorodudu, who launched into professional boxing in 1985, represented Nigeria in the Middleweight category in the boxing event of the Los Angeles 1994 Olympics, has a contract appointment with the NBF.

He participated in the Africa Boxing Championships and clichéd two medals for Nigeria.

At the national scene, Okorodudu won a gold medal in the 1979 National Sports Festival and he was in the 1980’s the national lightweight champion for many years in the amateur category.